A Look at Some Potential Key Assistant Coaching Decisions

The New York Giants offense could have a very different look and feel to it in 2018 once Pat Shurmur, who reportedly will be the next head coach, gets his hands on it.

Before he can remake an underachieving Giants team that was wrecked by injuries and dysfunction, the first thing Shurmur needs to do is complete his staff, which could be already in the making.

Alex Marvez of the Sporting News reports that former Panthers quarterbacks coach Ken Dorsey, fired by the team after the Carolina was eliminated from the postseason, could be one of Shurmur’s first hires, presumably for the same role. Giants general manager Dave Gettleman obviously is familiar with Dorsey from his time in Carolina.

Dorsey is a former NFL quarterback, having played with the 49ers (2003-2005) and the Browns (2006-2008). He had been the Panthers quarterbacks coach from 2013 until last week.

As far as offensive coordinator, Shurmur called the plays when he was the head coach of the Brown. Might he do the same with the Giants (once he becomes officially the new head coach), especially given his success with the Vikings?

Don’t rule that possibility out. While the experiment didn’t work with Ben McAdoo calling his own plays, part of the problem why McAdoo likely held on to the play calling reins was because Mike Sullivan, then his offensive coordinator, was believed to be more of a disciple of the system Kevin Gilbride, McAdoo’s predecessor, ran and thus was still learning the West coast offense.

Also, McAdoo, remember, only had two years as a play caller on any level whereas Shurmur has over eight years of experience as a play caller, and thus is probably more at ease at adjusting in-game.

Or might Shurmur reach out to old friend Brad Childress, who retired after this year? Shurmur and Childress were both part of Andy Reid’s Eagles staff in 1999-2001, when Childress was the quarterbacks coach. Childress, 61, was promoted to Eagles offensive coordinator in 2002, a spot he held until 2005

On defense, Shurmur could go in a completely different direction with all new hires, or stick with current Giants defensive coordinator Steve Spagnuolo and just tweak the staff, which so far has only lost defensive line coach Patrick Graham (to the Packers).

Shurmur has professional ties with Spagnuolo with two different teams. The two veteran coaches were on Andy Reid’s Eagles staff during the 1999-2001 seasons. Shurmur was also Spagnuolo’s offensive coordinator when Spagnuolo was the head coach of the St. Louis Rams in 2009 and 2010.

Another potential Giants holdover from the Giants defensive side of the ball could be linebackers coach Bill McGovern. McGovern and Shurmur were both part of Chip Kelly’s Eagles staff in 2015.

McGovern’s linebacker unit vastly underperformed this past season, but a large part of that was a combination of age, injury and lack of depth, something that new general manager is likely to address given that most of the players at that linebacker position are set to be unrestricted free agents this offseason.