EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J.** – Eli Manning's new position coach is his former position coach.
The Giants today announced that Mike Sullivan has been hired as the team's new quarterbacks coach, a position he held in 2010 and 2011. Sullivan, a member of Tom Coughlin's original Giants staff, was the wide receivers coach from 2004-09.
Sullivan was the Tampa Bay Buccaneers' offensive coordinator in 2012-13. After leaving the Bucs, he stayed in Tampa and worked this year as a consultant.
"It's great to be back," Sullivan said. "I can't wait to get started."
Sullivan replaces Danny Langsdorf, who left the Giants after one season to become the offensive coordinator at the University of Nebraska. Coughlin contacted Sullivan yesterday after Langsdorf's departure.
"Mike Sullivan is a quality football coach and is an outstanding positional coach and did a great job for us as a receiver coach and as a quarterbacks coach," Coughlin said. "He was the first thought that I had and we were fortunate in that the timing was right to get him back here. We're very pleased to be able to bring him back home."
After speaking with Coughlin, Sullivan had a lengthy phone conversation with offensive coordinator Ben McAdoo, with whom he has never worked.
"I know of Ben and I know a lot of folks that speak highly of him, including some other people that I've worked with," Sullivan said. "He had asked around about me and, fortunately, had heard some good things. We had a good conversation and, of course, I'm close with (wide receivers coach) Sean Ryan, (offensive line coach) Pat Flaherty and (tight ends coach) Kevin M. Gilbride. He has a comfort level with those guys and they were able to tell him what I'm about and how I work. I hit it off real well with him on the phone. He seemed like a great guy and did a heck of a job trying to change so much with a new system, new scheme and really got Eli doing a lot of good things. I'm just really excited to get back in the fold there and work with Eli."
In the two seasons during Sullivan's first tenure as quarterbacks coach, Manning completed 61.9 percent of his passes for 8,935 yards, 60 touchdowns, 41 interceptions and a passer rating of 89.2. He had career-high totals of 31 touchdown passes in 2010 and 4,933 yards the following season, when the Giants won their second Super Bowl with Manning as quarterback.
"Mike worked very well with Eli when he was the quarterbacks coach," Coughlin said. "We all wished him well when he went off to be an offensive coordinator, but we were sorry to see him go."
"I have a great working relationship with coach Sullivan," Manning said. "It will be good to have him back on the staff and back in the
quarterback room. When he was here, we did a great job getting the game plan together and communicating. We did good work in the offseason, so it will be good to have him back and get back to work."
Sullivan, who will also mentor backup Ryan Nassib, is looking forward to reuniting with Manning. His last game with the Giants was their Super Bowl XLVI victory over New England.
"The greatest memory was obviously the run that we had in 2011 and winning the Super Bowl," Sullivan said, "and the type of football he played and the competitiveness and resilience and poise. It was just such a great experience and I learned a lot from him. We had a lot of great experiences, and that's certainly something that I've always tried to draw upon in later years. I'm just really excited about doing everything possible to help him be the best that he can be and help us win."
Sullivan and Manning will be teaching each other, because the former is the coach, but the latter has one year of experience in the offense McAdoo installed last year.
"He'll have these next couple of months where he'll be with the coaches and he'll get familiar with everything," Manning said. "Coach McAdoo is in our meetings a good bit, so we'll all get together and he'll have time to learn everything and get up to speed and he'll learn it quickly and we'll move forward."
Sullivan's first job in the NFL was as Jacksonville's defensive quality control coach in 2002, Coughlin's final season as the Jaguars' head coach. When Coughlin joined the Giants in 2004, he hired Sullivan as his wide receivers coach.
"Mike has been with us a long time and he's a quality, quality person with a wonderful family, and he is versatile," Coughlin said. "He's a West Point grad. He's smart. He's disciplined. He does it all. He's a worker. He has an outstanding work ethic and he's a very positive guy. He's a very positive and uplifting guy."
Which is another reason the Giants are happy to have him back on their coaching staff.
With his 160th start this Sunday, Eli Manning will hold the record for the most starts as a Giants QB in franchise history. We look back at the Top-30 Games of Eli's Career in Throwback Thursday is presented by Taco bell