Joe Judge said he will waste no time after Sunday’s season finale before starting to prepare his Giants for year three.
“First thing Monday morning,” the head coach said Thursday. “It never really stops. As soon as this game’s done, we’ll talk with the players and then we’ll start planning immediately for next year.”
The Giants have lost five straight games by double digits without a capable quarterback or offensive line. Jake Fromm is expected to start Sunday when the Giants (4-12) host Washington (6-10). And Judge, 40, has been raked over the coals nationally for an out-of-body postgame defense of his program last Sunday.
“A lot of times when you’re building on swamp ground, you’ve got to go 10 times deeper before you start going up,” special teams coordinator Thomas McGaughey said. “We’re all on swamp ground [in the Meadowlands] and it’s a little harder here. It’s not Cleveland. It’s not other places. It’s New York City and it’s harder to build here.”
Saquon Barkley said Judge’s “passionate” defense of the team rang true with the players.
“He said things that he felt and that he believed in, and that a lot of players in the locker room believe in, too,” Barkley said. “What I took from it was the message that this place is going in the right direction.”
Logan Ryan said Judge was simply being “honest” and “truthful.”
“I trust Joe’s vision,” defensive coordinator Pat Graham said matter-of-factly. “Leadership has to have vision and with vision, you can’t be worried about the stuff that tries to sidetrack you from there. I know Joe’s strong, he’s a good leader, smart dude, and he’ll handle it how he needs to handle it. But to me, just ignore the noise.”
Judge wasn’t putting the cart before the horse talking about next season.
Asked for his preference for the Giants’ next offensive coordinator, Judge said: “I’m gonna hold any questions on that. I’m gonna file that under hypotheticals for right now. I’m gonna hold anything on that until a later date.”
But even with some uncertainty swirling about just how ownership might react to this jarringly disappointing final stretch, Judge and his coaches and players on Thursday seemed unfazed and confident in the current program’s direction.
“When we’ve seen this city flip, we already know what it is,” McGaughey said. “We’ve seen one week, ‘Eli [Manning] sucks.’ We’ve seen that, right? Now, his freaking name’s up in the rafters after two Super Bowls. We’ve seen it here. We know what it is.”
PASS IT ON
The Giants’ -10 net yards passing in last Sunday’s loss in Chicago was updated officially to -6 net yards by the Elias Sports Bureau due to a yardage tweak on Glennon’s fumble to open the game. So instead of having the fewest net passing yards since the San Diego Chargers’ -19 against the Chiefs in 1998, the Giants had the fewest since Tennessee’s -7 against the Patriots in 2009. But don’t worry: they have one more week!
TONEY TIME’S LIKELY UP
WR Kadarius Toney (shoulder) and LB Lorenzo Carter (illness) were downgraded to non-participants in Thursday’s practice. Carter wasn’t on the field. Toney stretched with the team, then did light side work. It’s likely the oft-injured first-round pick’s season is over with 39 catches for 420 yards and no touchdowns in only 10 games played.
Toney and Carter joined FB Cullen Gillaspia (knee), QB Glennon (wrist), DT Austin Johnson (foot), WR John Ross (knee) and LB Elerson Smith (neck) as DNPs.
Limited were RB Barkley (ankle), OT Korey Cunningham (Covid ramp-up), G Will Hernandez (ankle), WR Collin Johnson (hamstring), DT Dexter Lawrence (personal/Covid ramp-up), TE Kyle Rudolph (ankle), DT Danny Shelton (Covid ramp-up), WR Darius Slayton (shoulder/Covid ramp-up) and OT Andrew Thomas (shoulder).
Practice squad DB Dwayne Johnson was placed on the Covid reserve list, while WR Dante Pettis, who is on injured reserve, was removed from the Covid list.
Source: Berkshire mont