The 3-7 Giants fired offensive coordinator Jason Garrett on Tuesday coming off of Monday’s 30-10 defeat to the defending Super Bowl champion Tampa Bay Buccaneers on the road. It was another chapter in the team’s march toward another season failing to make the playoffs for the fifth straight year.
“We made a decision to move on from Jason Garrett as the offensive coordinator of the New York Giants,” said head coach Joe Judge. “Look, I have a lot of respect for Jason as a person, as a coach. He’s been a tremendous asset for me as a young head coach. He’s helped our development here.
“He’s built very strong relationships in the building with the players,” Judge went on, “along with other support staff members. He’s done a good job putting the team first. I have a lot of respect and appreciation for everything he’s done for us.”
Garrett is fundamentally a scapegoat for an offense that has been poor this season and one of the most unproductive in the NFL over the last five. The unit is currently ranked 25th out of the league’s 32 teams in total yards and is putting up just 18.9 points per game ahead of Sunday’s matchup against the 5-6 Philadelphia Eagles at MetLife Stadium.
The Giants’ ranks in the previous four seasons were 21st in 2017, 17th in 2018, 23rd in 2019 and 25th last season. So the issues predate Garrett, the former Dallas Cowboys head coach from 2011-2019 and interim head coach for eight games in the 2010 season. Irrespective of how the franchise’s ownership of John Mara and Steve Tisch, general manager Dave Gettleman and Judge choose to spin it, Garrett is the fall guy.
But they are just as culpable for the Giants’ offensive deficiencies, as decisions on front office and scouting department hirings, drafting, free-agent signings and player development are all significant factors. Running back Saquon Barkley (2018) and tight end Evan Engram (2020) are the Giants’ only two skill position players to be named to the Pro Bowl since 2018.
The 55-year-old Garrett, a backup quarterback for the Giants from 2000-2003, who was hired as the team’s offensive coordinator in January of 2020 when Judge was named the new head coach, replacing the terminated Pat Shurmur, had been intensely criticized by fans and media for what has been deemed a lack of creativity and dubious play calling. The subjective assessment is justified but only part of the factual narrative as to why the Giants’ offense has been impotent.