In Giants.com's "Top 5" series, we rank the best games, plays and moments from the 2016 season. Here are the Top 5 off-the-field stories of 2016:
McADOO NAMED 17TH HEAD COACH
On Jan. 14, 2016, the New York Giants named Ben McAdoo the 17th head coach in franchise history. McAdoo was the team's offensive coordinator the previous two seasons after an eight-year stint as an assistant coach in Green Bay, where he helped the Packers win Super Bowl XLV.
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"I have been preparing for this moment my entire professional life," McAdoo said, "and without the guidance and support of many people, I would not be here right now."
GIANTS HEADLINED THE OFFSEASON
With a "healthy" salary cap situation, general manager Jerry Reese and his staff orchestrated one of the biggest free agency periods in recent memory by signing Olivier Vernon, Damon Harrison and Janoris Jenkins, three of the top defensive players on the market. All three went on to pick up All-Pro or Pro Bowl honors for the first time in their careers. Reese followed that up with another strong draft class, beginning with cornerback Eli Apple and wide receiver Sterling Shepard.
The Giants kicked off the International Series in 2007, the year they went on to win Super Bowl XLII, with a 13-10 victory over the Dolphins at Wembley Stadium in London. It was the first regular-season NFL game played outside North America. In 2016, they returned. But this time they traveled to play the Rams in the first NFL game played at Twickenham Stadium, a famed rugby venue.
THREE ADDED TO RING OF HONOR
On Nov. 14, 2016, Tom Coughlin, Ernie Accorsi and Justin Tuck, three cornerstones in recent Giants history, were inducted together into the team's Ring of Honor during halftime of a Monday night game vs. Cincinnati. Their inclusion brought the total to 42 members who have received the franchise's highest honor. Coughlin became the fourth head coach (Steve Owen, Jim Lee Howell and Bill Parcells) inducted, Accorsi the second general manager (joining George Young), and Tuck the fifth defensive end (Andy Robustelli, George Martin, Michael Strahan and Osi Umenyiora).
MANNING SELECTED AS WALTER PAYTON FINALIST
During halftime of the NFC Championship Game, Eli Manning was named one of three finalists for the Walter Payton NFL Man of the Year Award, the league's most prestigious honor for off-field endeavors. The winner will be announced during the Fifth Annual NFL Honors awards show on Feb. 4, the night before Super Bowl LI. Manning was also a finalist last year as he looks to become the first Giants player to be selected the NFL Man of the Year in the award's 47-year history. Manning was also named the Giants' Man of the Year in 2007, 2008, 2011, 2012, 2014 and 2015.
"It's an honor to be selected as the Walter Payton Man of the Year for the New York Giants," Manning said, "and to be one of the three finalists, along with Larry Fitzgerald and Greg Olsen, two guys I have great respect for on and off the field. It's truly an honor. Anytime you're associated in the same breath with Walter Payton, it's tremendous."