The New York Giants are expected to employ Jason Garrett as their offensive coordinator for the second straight year.
ESPN’s Jordan Raanan reported the news Thursday.
Two important items (per sources) in this week’s #BreakingBigBlue.
— Jason Garrett is in fact expected to return as OC even though may be changes to staff (new OL coach, possible internal alterations).
— Jordan Raanan (@JordanRaanan) February 4, 2021
Obviously, this isn’t music to the ears of impatient fans. Garrett’s system and offensive gameplans this past season made it seem as if former Giants head coach Pat Shurmur never left. The incompetency, inconsistency, and inefficiency were present in and around the offensive unit for much of the year. New York finished 31st in both total yards and scoring, with the Jets sitting as the only team worse than them in either category.
Even if there was ever a glimpse of creativity within the play-calling, it would rapidly fade. A constant rhythm was never found within the 11-man group, and it cost the Giants a number of games they were only in because of their strong defense.
If there is one bright side to retaining Garrett, it’s what it could do for young quarterback Daniel Jones. Entering his third season, Jones will be able to work with the same offensive play-caller two years in a row for the first time in his career. He underwent a coaching change from 2019 to 2020 when Shurmur and former offensive coordinator Mike Shula were replaced with Joe Judge and Garrett.
Coaching-related familiarity could be a step in the right direction for a quarterback who hasn’t been perfect through his first two seasons. The Giants are banking on a methodical development of the former first-round pick; retaining Garrett could assist in achieving that goal.
However, other changes need to be made for the offensive unit to greatly improve in 2021 and beyond.
The Giants must address the tight end position as well as the receiving corps, given either spot was an on-field issue in 2020.
Considering Evan Engram’s struggles with drops and overall drive-killing mistakes, there’s the lingering chance the Giants part ways with him in the offseason in favor of a free agent or potentially an early-round draftee. Hunter Henry (Chargers) and Jonnu Smith (Titans) are set to be available (barring franchise tags) and Florida’s Kyle Pitts could be on the draft board at No. 11 overall.
In regard to the frustrating receiving corps, the Giants don’t employ a true No. 1 wideout. Each current starting receiver possesses his own strength — Darius Slayton could be a productive deep threat, Sterling Shepard carries the potential to be a reliable possession receiver, while Golden Tate has a history of being successful in the yards-after-catch department.
Regardless, each also has the tendency to disappear, and Tate may not even be with the team in 2021 anyway.
Jones needs a steady No. 1 target; a partner in crime, like what Eli Manning had in Odell Beckham Jr. for a number of years.
Amid Garrett’s return, a significant number of alterations in other areas need to occur. This offseason will be a noteworthy opportunity to complete that task, and if progress toward that development isn’t made, fans might have to expect a continuation of the offensive woes