Giants GM Jerry Reese calls last season ‘below our standards’
Giants general manager Jerry Reese isn’t a sabermetrician, but he did acknowledge there are a couple of numbers that have been dancing in his head for a while now: 190 and 1.
The former relates to the amount of days between Reese’s press conference on Saturday and the date MetLife Stadium will host Super Bowl XLVIII, while the latter is of more significance as it displays the number of times the Giants have made the playoffs over the last four seasons.
Reese said before the Giants even think of being the first team of the Super Bowl era to play the big game in its own stadium, the team will need to find a way to get into the postseason tournament.
“All I know is we’ve been in the playoffs one time in the last four years and that really is not acceptable for us. That’s not our standards. That’s not what we shoot for,” said Reese. “We want to put everybody on notice — myself [included]. When you look at it and you see that number jump out at you — 190 days — that’s really not that far away. The sense of urgency really jumps out at me. We’re going to put up in the locker room a countdown so guys can see how urgent it is to be ready to go every week.”
Not even two Super Bowl appearances in the last five seasons will suffice, according to Reese, because of the “what have you done for me lately” mentality in sports. Reese feels his public stance is the right tone for a team that is in a closely bunched division.
Reese said he thinks back to “lost” seasons when the Giants had a successful win-loss campaign, yet missed the playoffs. Specific seasons like last year (9-7) and 2010 (10-6) come to mind when the Giants had a solid roster and good record, but couldn’t get over the hump. Reese hopes practicing in the shadows of MetLife Stadium every day and seeing reports and hearing the constant hoopla of a rarity — a Super Bowl outdoors in a cold-weather city — will give his team a little more boost.
“We’ve been close, but close is not good enough,” Reese said. “It’s all about consistency. At times last year we were a good football team, and at other times we were a bad football team. I want us to be consistent every week and look like that good football team.”
Head coach Tom Coughlin agreed with Reese’s urgency, but as the overseer of the Giants’ roster on a daily basis, and seeing that the team just opened its training camp, Coughlin said he really didn’t have time for counting the days.
He’ll leave that up to Reese.
“I don’t know. What day is today? I have no idea. It’s training camp,” Coughlin said when asked if he’s like Reese and counting the days. “When Jerry came in and showed it to me, his point was that it is not very far away, and if that’s the case, then there would be a sense of urgency about just reminding people what that is. … I’m fine with that.”
There’s no indication from ownership that Reese’s — or Coughlin’s — jobs are on the hot seat, but the former passionately sounded as if his job status is up in the air.
“Really, nothing takes away the sting [of missing the playoffs] except getting in the tournament and having a chance to win the Super Bowl,” Reese said. “So again, one playoff trip in the last four years is just below our standards. We want to do better. We will do better.”
Big Blue notes …
» There’s a reason why Reese’s job may still be secure, as the general manager has lorded over a very prosperous time for the franchise recently — regardless of the one playoff appearance in the last four seasons. His resume is highlighted by two Super Bowl championships in his first six seasons. Big Blue has also won the NFC East twice, been to the playoffs three times, sported a 58-38 record (.604 winning percentage) and hasn’t seen his team endure a single losing season along the way.
Follow Giants beat writer Tony Williams on Twitter @TBone8 for live updates and photos from training camp.