Three Giants writers discuss Friday's press conference introducing GM Dave Gettleman:
Our writers react to the hiring of Dave Gettleman as the Giants' fourth general manager since 1979:
The Giants felt they had the right man for the job in Dave Gettleman and pulled the trigger so they are in position to pursue head coaching candidates starting Monday. Gettleman is someone that will be able to slide into the Giants organization seamlessly due to his familiarity, yet also brings a different philosophy and fresh set of eyes to selecting players in the draft. In his prior time with the Giants, he worked on pro personnel, not the draft. This will be a major change in how the Giants evaluate in the draft.
He also has successful experience as a general manager in Carolina, helping put together a team that went to a Super Bowl in 2015 and is 11-4 this year with the chance at a division title and a first-round bye. He might not be a new face, but he will bring a different perspective and change along with it as the Giants' next general manager.
During major news conferences, like today's introduction of Gettleman, I always find it interesting to scan certain faces in attendance and watch their reactions. In between chuckles when Gettleman's Boston accent slipped out – "winning is hawd" – John Mara's face said it all. The team president, after introducing Gettleman, took a seat on the stage facing out toward the rows of media in the auditorium. Mara lit up at different times when terms like "brutally honest" or "culture is critical" came out of his new general manager's mouth. I, a lowly writer, am not one to assume to know what an owner of a major sports franchise is thinking at any given moment, but that presser must have been music to his ears after a franchise that has been in his family since its founding in 1925 set a record for most losses this season. It's time for some tough love, and Gettleman sounds like he's prepared to deliver it.
When Dave Gettleman took over as general manager of the Carolina Panthers in 2013, he inherited a team that had not posted a winning season since 2008, missed the playoffs in each of the previous four campaigns and had one of the toughest salary cap situations in recent memory. That first season, the Panthers went 12-4, and two years later appeared in Super Bowl 50 after claiming their third straight NFC South title. Now he'll look to orchestrate another quick turnaround for the Giants, an organization he's very familiar with given he served as a scout for the team beginning in 1998 and worked his way up to director of pro personnel before leaving for Carolina. Gettleman understands the culture of the franchise and values the play in the trenches, which has been a huge part of the Giants' identity since they were founded. Case in point, he drafted defensive tackle Kawann Short and guard Trai Turner, two Pro Bowlers, in consecutive seasons in 2013 and 2014 when he was with the Panthers.
When you think of some of the historical franchises in the NFL, like the Steelers and Packers, they have a specific structure they follow to maintain stability -- and the Giants are no different. Pittsburgh's current GM, Kevin Colbert, who has been in that position since 2010, served as the team's director of football operations for the previous decade and, much like with Gettleman, Green Bay brought back Ted Thompson to serve as GM in 2005 after he had a short stint in the Seahawks' front office. Prior to that, Thompson had worked in the Packers' front office from 1992 to 1999, so there was a familiarity and comfort level in turning to someone who understood the direction of the organization. Gettleman's background involves scouting the college and professional ranks, which is the perfect combo when it comes to running a team. He also hammered out contract extensions with two of the cornerstones of the Panthers' franchise in quarterback Cam Newton and linebacker Luke Kuechly, relevant information considering the Giants have a number of critical decisions to make regarding their own young nucleus.