*The Giants have announced the dismissal of Coach Ben McAdoo and GM Jerry Reese: *
EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. – The Giants today initiated a major restructuring of their football operation by dismissing general manager Jerry Reese and head coach Ben McAdoo.
Team president John Mara and chairman Steve Tisch announced the moves this morning, less than 24 hours after the Giants fell to 2-10 this season with a 24-17 loss to the Raiders in Oakland.
Defensive coordinator Steve Spagnuolo will be the interim head coach for the season’s final four games, beginning Sunday at home against the Dallas Cowboys.
Kevin Abrams, who has been the assistant general manager for 16 years, will be the interim G.M.
“Steve and I spoke after yesterday’s game in Oakland and agreed to talk again today,” said Mara. “This morning, we decided in the best interest of the franchise that we would relieve Jerry and Ben of their duties, effective immediately. This season has been incredibly disappointing for the organization and our fans, and while it would be ideal to make these kinds of decisions at the conclusion of the season, we simply felt now is the time to prepare for a fresh start.
“I have great respect for both Jerry and Ben. Jerry has worked tirelessly for this franchise for 23 years. He has always communicated in a straight forward and honest manner. Ben, as a first time head coach, continued up until this morning to do everything in his power to give us a chance to win. I know the public perception of both these men is not positive, but within these walls, you could not ask for two better professionals.”
Added Tisch, “This has been an extremely difficult and disappointing season. Unfortunately, there are no easy answers or quick fixes. And John and I were confronted with making the tough decisions of today.
“We know how frustrated our fans are. They expect more from us and we expect more from ourselves. Our focus now is on developing and improving our football team so that our fans can enjoy the winning team they expect and deserve.”
McAdoo was in his second season as head coach. He led the team to a regular-season record of 13-15, plus 0-1 in the postseason.
McAdoo spent two seasons as the Giants’ offensive coordinator before replacing head coach Tom Coughlin following the 2015 season. In his first season, McAdoo led the Giants to an 11-5 record and their first postseason berth in five years. The season ended when they lost an NFC Wild Card Game in Green Bay.
Expectations were high for the Giants entering the 2017 season, with some pundits predicting they would be a Super Bowl team. But they lost their first five games, suffered several debilitating injuries, and sputtered on offense. The Giants are tied with San Francisco for the NFL’s second-worst record, behind only winless Cleveland. Only the Browns have scored fewer than the Giants’ 189 points.
McAdoo becomes the first Giants coach to be dismissed during a season since Bill Arnsparger in 1976. Arnsparger was 0-7 when he was relieved of his duties. The Giants’ 2-10 record is their worst through 12 games since that season.
Reese was in his 11th season as the Giants’ general manager. In his first 10 seasons as head of the franchise’s football operations, the Giants won Super Bowls XLII and XLVI and had an 88-72 regular-season record, including an 8-2 postseason mark. During Reese’s tenure, the Giants won two NFC East championships, earned four postseason berths and finished .500 or better seven times.
But this season will be the fifth in six years in which the Giants will not make the playoffs.
Spagnuolo is in the third season of his second stint as the Giants’ defensive coordinator. He was also the coordinator in 2007-08. In Super Bowl XLII, his schemes frustrated the New England Patriots, who that season had what was then the highest–scoring offense in NFL history.
A 36-year coaching veteran, including 19 in the NFL, Spagnuolo (pronounced SPAG-no-low) has coached for teams that have made nine playoff appearances, won six division titles, played in five conference championship games, earned two conference titles and won a Super Bowl.
With Spagnuolo as the architect of the defense, the 2007 Giants ranked in the NFL’s Top 10 in eight statistical categories, including a league-high 53 sacks. Spagnuolo’s defense did its best work in the four-game postseason, allowing an average of 16.3 points per game. In the Super Bowl, his schemes and adjustments held the 18-0 New England Patriots – who had league-high averages of 411.3 yards and 36.8 points a game in the regular season – to 274 yards and 14 points.
Spagnuolo left the Giants in 2009 to become the head coach in St. Louis, where he inherited a 2-14 team and within two seasons had the Rams within one game of a playoff berth, losing in the final game of the 2010 season to finish 7-9. In 2012, he was the defensive coordinator in New Orleans. Spagnuolo led a unit that finished with 15 interceptions, including four that were returned for touchdowns, and forced 11 fumbles to help the Saints finish with a plus-two turnover differential. In Week 15, the Saints defeated Tampa Bay, 41-0, earning their first shutout victory since 1995.
In 2016, the Giants fielded the NFL’s most-improved defense. The unit achieved top 10 rankings in 12 statistical categories recognized by the NFL, including a top five ranking in eight critical statistical categories: touchdowns allowed (first), red zone efficiency (first), points allowed per game (second), opposing quarterback rating (second), yards allowed per rush (second), third-down efficiency (third), completion percentage (third), and first downs allowed per game (fifth).
Abrams is one of the longest-tenured members of the Giants’ football hierarchy. Before assuming his job as assistant general manager under then-G.M. Ernie Accorsi, Abrams served for three years as the team’s salary cap analyst.
Abrams is the team’s primary negotiator for player contracts, works with the college and pro personnel departments to evaluate players in preparation for the NFL Draft and free agency, and is responsible for managing the Giants’ salary cap, football data analysis, related strategic planning for football operations and coordinating the organization’s compliance with the NFL’s Collective Bargaining Agreement.
In July 1999, Abrams joined the Giants to fill the newly-created position of salary cap analyst. He came to the Giants from the NFL Management Council, where he helped to monitor the league-wide salary cap and analyzed all new player contracts with respect to the rules and regulations of the Collective Bargaining Agreement.