Ron Rivera
ESNY Graphic, Getty Images

Pat Shurmur is firmly on the hot seat. Could Ron Rivera serve as a suitable replacement for the New York Giants? 

The New York Giants are almost historically bad. They’ve been eliminated from playoff contention and will finish the year with a losing record, marking the third-straight season they do so.

The Giants have a myriad of issues, but one of the most prominent is their head coach. In his second season with the Giants, Pat Shurmur has an overall record of 7-21. His play-calling has been questionable as a head coach and the man cannot seem to properly utilize one of the best running backs in the league, which is just one of his questionable coaching decisions.

The only credit one may give him is the development of Daniel Jones. However, that’s not reason enough to keep him around after this season. There has already been much speculation over who the Giants next head coach could be, and considering who’s sitting in the general manager’s chair, recently-fired Carolina Panthers head coach Ron Rivera is one name to keep an eye on.

Defensive-minded in nature, Rivera achieved great success in Carolina, where he became recognized as one of the better head coaches in the NFL.

He spent over nine seasons in Carolina and sports a career record of 76-63-1. The Panthers’ memorable run to the Super Bowl in 2016 was highlighted by a 15-win season led by a nasty defense. Rivera also had quarterback Cam Newton playing at an MVP level, which was the high-point of his career. It’s a season that Panthers’ fans won’t soon forget.

However, that season came to a halt with an ugly loss to the Denver Broncos in the Super Bowl. The most notable outcome of the season was Newton’s development as quarterback. He turned potential into an MVP season.

How can this be applied to the Giants? To start, the Giants could use a head coach with a defense-centric mentality.

Their defense is one of the worst in the league and it’s comprised of many young and inexperienced players. They have five rookies, Deandre Baker, Dexter Lawrence, Julian Love, Oshane Ximenes and Corey Ballentine, playing major roles.

Rivera’s former players all seem to love him and attribute their success to his great coaching and development. A youthful team, like the Giants, needs an experienced coach with a good track record of developing players.

Speaking of development, Rivera was crucial in developing Newton. He helped Newton refine his naturally dominant athletic traits and turn him into a refined and versatile quarterback.

The Giants themselves have a rookie quarterback in Jones. It’s imperative that Jones enters his sophomore year with a seasoned coach who has experience developing quarterbacks.

Rivera also turned Christian McCaffrey into a front-runner for the Offensive Player of the Year and in the mix as league MVP. Saquon Barkley, who is acknowledged as an elite back, has had an unremarkable sophomore season. He’ll need to come out of the gates strong next year.

Since Rivera helped McCaffrey as much as he did, imagine what he could do with Barkley.

Of course, the real reason Rivera’s name continuously pops up in Northern New Jersey is due to one particular connection with the Giants. General manager Dave Gettleman is the one who hired Rivera in Carolina. Considering these two already have such a relationship could make this hiring possible.

Rivera has been a solid NFL coach. It was just time for the two sides to part ways. He’s a wonderful candidate for a job that will soon be available in New York.

Who knows, he could end up as the next New York Football Giants head coach. With Gettleman, expect anything.

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