New York Giants head coach Pat Shurmur’s coaching staff has been finalized.
Shurmur’s new staff includes seven offensive assistants (Mike Shula, coordinator; Tyke Tolbert, wide receivers; Hal Hunter, offensive line;, Craig Johnson, running backs; Lunda Wells, tight ends; Ben Wilkerson, assistant offensive line; and Ryan Roeder, offensive assistant); seven defensive assistants (James Bettcher, defensive coordinator; Gary Emanuel, defensive line; Bill McGovern, linebackers; Lou Anarumo, defensive backs; Deshea Townsend, assistant defensive backs; Rob Leonard, assistant linebackers; and Bobby Blick, defensive assistant) and special teams Thomas McGaughey and assistant Anthony Blevins.
“We’re thrilled to announce our coaches,” Shurmur said. “They’re all excellent people, career coaches, guys who have had success in the profession developing players. We’re excited to have them here at the New York Giants.
“Some of the coaches I have a history with, some were on previous staffs here, and other coaches are guys I’ve known through the profession. I took a good look at some of the coaches that were here, and we certainly wanted to make sure that some of the really fine coaches that were in the building a year ago had an opportunity to stay.”
Johnson, Wells, Roeder, MGovern, and Leonard are all holdovers from Ben McAdoo’s coaching staff. McGaughey was on Tom Coughlin’s staff from 2007-2010.
“I’ve been through this and when you’re a new coach, the process of putting together your initial staff is time-consuming. There are many, many excellent coaches out there, but you want to try to bring in the right guys that fit,” Shurmur said.
The team also announced it has retained strength and conditioning coach Aaron Wellman and longtime assistant Markus Paul, as well as Joe Danos (performance manager) and Pratik Patel (director of performance nutrition).
Wellman and Patel were brought in by McAdoo; Danos and Paul were assistants on Coughlin’s coaching staff.
Shurmur has familiarity with Shula, even though the two haven’t really worked together before.
“I’ve known Mike a very long time,” Shurmur said. “He’s done an outstanding job developing and working with quarterbacks. He was the offensive coordinator of a team that was recently playing in the Super Bowl. They’ve done an excellent job on offense in Carolina. We share a vision in terms of what we want to do offensively. We’re excited that he’ll be with us. He’ll be the offensive coordinator and work with the quarterbacks.
“He’ll assume all the roles that any offensive coordinator would have, and he’d obviously be in positon to call it, if need be.”
Shurmur also revealed that his choice of Hunter for the team’s offensive line coach was based on scheme.
“(With) Hunter, there’s a bit of a scheme fit,” Shurmur said. “He’s done a good job coaching the offensive line wherever he’s been.”
Among those players coached by Hunter is Browns 10-time Pro Bowler Joe Thomas.
Bettcher, 39, comes to the Giants after five seasons with the Arizona Cardinals, the last three as defensive coordinator. In those three years, the Cards’ defense was consistently among the NFL’s best in yardage allowed, ranking fifth in 2015 (321.7), second in 2016 (305.2) and sixth in 2017 (310.9).
Arizona was also one of the league’s most effective run-stopping units each season, finishing, respectively, sixth (91.3), ninth (94.9), and sixth again (89.6). In 2016, Bettcher’s defense led the NFL with 48 sacks. Last season, the Cards took down opposing quarterbacks 37 times, including an NFL-leading 17.0 sacks by Chandler Jones.
“James coaches a defense that’s hard to score against,” said Shurmur. “He had great success in Arizona, and we’re certainly glad to have him here.”
McGaughey, most recently with Carolina, was the Giants assistant special teams coordinator in 2007-2010.
“I knew Thomas in the profession, and after having a chance to visit with him, I knew it would be a perfect fit here,” Shurmur said. “He’s an outstanding coach. He coached top 10 units in special teams.”
The Giants coaching staff takes on a slightly different look overall than it did under the previous regime. For one, Shurmur didn’t hire a quarterbacks coach. That role will be handled by Shula.
Shurmur didn’t hire an assistant defensive line coach, but he did hire an assistant linebackers coach. The Giants are expected to make over their linebacker unit given that Jonathan Casillas, Mark Herzlich, Keenan Robinson and Devon Kennard are all set to be unrestricted free agents.
Shurmur also didn’t hire a separate cornerbacks and safeties coach. Instead. Anarumo and Townsend are expected to work together.