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Giants Now: Rob Gronkowski calls Brian Daboll his greatest position coach ever


Rob Gronkowski calls Brian Daboll his greatest position coach ever

Brian Daboll's successful start to his tenure as head coach may come as a surprise to some around the NFL world. But for those that have worked with him in the past, his 5-1 start is hardly a shock.

Count former Patriots and Buccaneers tight end Rob Gronkowski in the latter category.

Gronkowski recently joined Giants legend Michael Strahan and the rest of the NFL on FOX crew prior to the Week 6 slate of games, where he called Daboll the greatest position coach he has ever played for.

"I've had many great tight end position coaches, but Brian Daboll, he brought the best out of you," Gronkowski said on the pregame show. "He had that niche to get you to enjoy the game and go out there and play at your full potential."

In his second stint with the Patriots from 2013-16, Daboll served as the tight ends coach where he worked closely with Gronkowski. The future Hall of Fame tight end was named First-Team All-Pro and to the Pro Bowl twice during that four-year stretch (2014-15) as he registered back-to-back campaigns with 70+ receptions, 1,100+ receiving yards and 11+ touchdowns.

Those were two of the best seasons of his 11-year NFL career. Gronkowski also totaled 31 receptions for 431 yards and six touchdowns in five career playoff games with Daboll as his position coach.

The two were a part of two Super Bowl championship teams during that span (XLIX & LI), although Gronkowski was on injured reserve for Super Bowl LI.

When Daboll left the Patriots following the 2016 season, he went to Alabama where he served as the offensive coordinator under Nick Saban. Late in that season when asked about the difference between coaching college players compared to NFL players, Daboll joked, "I had Gronk... He's outstanding."

Inside the Numbers: Double-digit deficits no problem for Giants

Giants fans searching for more positive vibes in the team's 5-1 start need only look at their penchant for overcoming double-digit deficits.

Three times in the season's first six weeks, the Giants fell behind by 10 or more points before surging to victory. In the season opener, they trailed at Tennessee, 13-0, but rallied to win, 21-20. In the last two weeks, the Giants trailed 20-10 in the second half against both Green Bay in London and Baltimore in MetLife Stadium but scored two fourth-quarter touchdowns in each game to secure 27-22 and 24-20 victories.

The Giants had last won consecutive games after trailing in each by at least 10 points on Oct. 16-23, 2016. Ironically, the two games included one in London and one against the Ravens. Exactly six years ago Sunday, they faced an early 10-0 deficit against Baltimore but won, 27-23. A week later, they again gave up the first 10 points in the opening quarter, to the Rams, but shut them out the rest of the way in a 17-10 triumph in Twickenham Stadium.

The Giants are the only team with three victories this season after trailing by 10+ points.

They are the fourth team ever to record three such wins within their first six games of a season, joining the 1980 Miami Dolphins, 1981 Cincinnati Bengals and 1993 Philadelphia Eagles.

Perhaps more significantly, in just six games, the Giants have tied their franchise record with three victories after falling behind by two scores for a full season. Three times in their history, the Giants won three games in a season after trailing by 10+ points – and each of those seasons is significant in team annals.

According to the Elias Sports Bureau, the first was 2007, when the Giants won Super Bowl XLII. They also did it in 2011, the season that ended with a victory in Super Bowl XLVI. And they rallied from big deficits three times in 2016, the most recent season in which they finished with a winning record (11-5) and played in the postseason (as a wild card).

For the record, the 2007 comebacks were against Washington, the Jets and Buffalo. In 2011, the opponents were Arizona, Miami and Dallas, and in 2016, they were the Ravens, Rams and Chicago Bears.

Giants sign WR Marcus Johnson off practice squad

The Giants yesterday made a series of transactions affecting both their active roster and practice squad.

Wide receiver Marcus Johnson was signed to the roster off the practice squad. He had been elevated from the squad for each of the last three games, the maximum number of times that move can be made with one player.

The Giants had two open roster spots after rookie defensive lineman D.J. Davidson and defensive back Tony Jefferson were placed on injured reserve last week.

The Giants also signed veteran tackle Korey Cunningham and tight end Lawrence Cager to their practice squad and released tight end Austin Allen from the squad.

View photos of the New York Giants' 2022 roster as it currently stands.


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