The Giants are in the middle of yet another losing season despite having higher expectations. After suffering their eighth loss of the year, New York has guaranteed the best they can do is finish .500. Based on how they’ve played so far, the prospect of winning the rest of the games seems just about impossible.
The Giants are currently led by head coach Pat Shurmur. Any time a coach suffers two consecutive losing seasons, whispers begin to surface about job security. So with a second straight year of futility all but confirmed for the G-Men, how long will Pat Shurmur coach the Giants?
Pat Shurmur’s career before the Giants
Shurmur has a long career in NFL coaching. He’s served as an offensive coordinator for the St. Louis Rams (2009-10), Philadelphia Eagles (2013-15), and Minnesota Vikings (2016-17). Prior to the Giants, his only other head coaching experience at the pro level was in Cleveland from 2011-12 and as an interim head coach for the Eagles in 2015.
While his tenure in Cleveland ended abruptly like so many other coaching careers associated with the Browns, Shurmur has seen some success as a coach. From 2002-08, the now-54-year-old was the quarterback coach of the Philadelphia Eagles, playing an integral role in Donovan McNabb’s development.
After playing for four years at Michigan State, Shurmur served as the school’s tight ends coach from 1990-97. He then put in one season as Stanford’s tight ends coach.
Pat Shurmur’s tenure with the Giants
Shurmur’s time with the Giants has been a struggle. In his first season, the team opted not to draft a quarterback in the first round. Then, they went 5-11. During the 2019 offseason, the team drafted Duke quarterback Daniel Jones with the sixth overall pick.
At the outset of this season, Shurmur said the team was keeping its options open at QB. This claim rang true, as Shurmur quickly pulled the plug on Manning in favor of Jones. While Jones has done surprisingly well, he hasn’t been able to overcome a talent-starved roster. Through 10 games, the Giants are 2-8 and seem headed for another top-five pick in next year’s draft.
How long will Pat Shurmur coach the Giants
One thing Shurmur has in his favor is that the Giants’ front office is not prone to make hasty decisions. While they did fire Ben McAdoo in his second season (before hiring Shurmur), McAdoo had famously bungled the midseason benching of Eli Manning. While Shurmur’s Giants have been bad, there haven’t been any colossal PR foul-ups.
There’s also the question of how much blame one can assign Shurmur for the Giants’ shortcomings. Last season, he was stuck with Manning and no other feasible quarterback options after the team used its 2018 draft pick on running back Saquon Barkley. While Barkley has dazzled when he plays, he’s had injury issues in 2019.
The Giants also traded its best offensive player, Odell Beckham Jr., before Barkley got there. Now they have an offense with Golden Tate and Sterling Shepherd as the No. 1 and No. 2 passing options — both slot receivers. The defense is depleted as well with not a lot of talent.
Shurmur is in the second season of a five-year deal. His fate will likely be determined by the rest of the year. If the Giants play more competitively in the back half of 2019, Shurmur’s job is likely safe. But another disaster season where they finish with four wins or less and he’ll probably start revising his resume.