The New York Giants appear close to naming their next head coach, and Brian Flores could be the man in question.
Flores, who went 25-24 in three seasons as the Miami Dolphins’ head coach from 2019-21, is reportedly in the mix for the Giants’ coaching vacancy. The four-time Super Bowl champion is expected to meet with the franchise on Thursday, Jan. 27, less than three weeks after the Dolphins surprisingly fired him after a 9-8 showing this season.
Should the Giants bring Flores, who was born and raised in Brooklyn, back to the New York area? The answer is slightly more complicated than one might think.
Flores checks nearly every box the Giants should have regarding their next head coach
Despite not having interviewed as of publication, it appears Flores has a realistic chance of earning the Giants’ head coaching position. According to the New York Post’s Ian O’Connor, Giants owner John Mara already assured Flores, who turns 41 on Feb. 24, that he is a “serious candidate” to replace former New England Patriots colleague Joe Judge.
Flores, who grew up a Giants fan, checks nearly every box the team should have regarding its next head coach. He has head coaching experience and went 19-14 in his final two seasons with the Dolphins after inheriting an organization in the early stages of a rebuild.
Flores spent his final season with the Patriots as the team’s defensive-play caller. The 2018 Patriots allowed 20.3 points per game, seventh-best in the NFL, and held the Los Angeles Rams to three points in Super Bowl 53.
Although he never reached the playoffs in Miami, Flores instilled a culture of toughness that had been lacking in the Adam Gase era. Giants fans should eagerly hope Flores can do the same in New York, especially after how poorly things went during Judge’s tenure.
John Mara and Joe Schoen should rightfully be concerned about Flores’ reported clashes with Dolphins players and management
The football world understandably reacted with shock upon learning the Dolphins fired Flores less than 24 hours after a season-ending victory over the Patriots. However, those who cover the sport weren’t as surprised upon learning the reason behind his departure stemmed from reported clashes with general manager Chris Grier and quarterback Tua Tagovailoa.
The Giants cannot afford to get the next hire wrong. The next head coach will be the franchise’s fourth since parting ways with two-time Super Bowl champion Tom Coughlin after the 2015 season. Ben McAdoo and his oversized suit didn’t make it through two full seasons, Pat Shurmur earned his walking papers after 32 games, and the less said about the final month of Judge’s tenure, the better.
If the Giants decide Flores is worth hiring, the franchise must first find out exactly what went wrong in Miami from a relationship standpoint. In three years, Flores had four different offensive coordinators, including questionably hiring former Bills head coach Chan Gailey ahead of the 2020 season. New York Jets fans are still shuddering upon seeing his name and recalling the nonstop screen passes Gailey called as the team’s offensive coordinator in the mid-2010s.
Although new Giants general manager Joe Schoen worked in Miami for a decade, he left for Buffalo before the Dolphins hired Flores. Nonetheless, Schoen should still have plenty of contacts inside the Dolphins organization to acquire the necessary information about their most recent head coach.
Should the Giants hire Brian Flores as head coach?
At this stage in the game, it appears the Giants’ next head coach will have New York ties. Flores is obviously from Brooklyn, while Brian Daboll — the presumptive frontrunner — and Leslie Frazier are currently employed as the Buffalo Bills’ offensive and defensive coordinators, respectively.
Despite his reported relationship issues and defensive background, Flores makes perfect sense for the Giants. Although calling his three years in Miami a “failure” sounds harsh, failure is often the best teacher.
As of publication, Flores had already interviewed with the Chicago Bears and Houston Texans, which bodes well for his chances of earning a head coaching job even if he’s not on the Giants’ sideline next year.
The Giants are understandably enamored with Daboll, who helped develop Josh Allen into one of the NFL’s top quarterbacks. However, if the veteran offensive mind takes another job, Mara and Schoen must pivot to Flores and schedule a press conference.