Eventually Joe Schoen’s Giants will need play games. And those are unlikely to go well, at least in the beginning. That said, the general manager continues to build equity to help weather those anticipated storms.
The Schoen lovefest rolled on Monday when he fired two front office holdovers from the Dave Gettleman era. Director of college scouting Chris Pettit and senior personnel executive Kyle O’Brien got the sack two days after what Schoen’s well-received first NFL draft at the helm. Pettit had been with the team in various roles for almost two decades dating back to the Ernie Accorsi era; O’Brien was a recent Joe Judge-driven arrival.
Fans were giddy (and also creating conspiracy theories) about Pettit’s dismissal in particular. He had achieved bogeyman status on #GiantsTwitter in recent months thanks to guilt-by-association and some less-than-flattering press. There was so much heat on Pettit you would have thought he made all the bad picks and handed out all the dumb contracts, not Gettleman. There are people who are probably fired up that his bio has already been deleted from the website and think Schoen himself went in and played with the HTML code.
The fact Schoen was able to can Pettit is a good sign for Giants fans. But it remains to be seen how good. Getting rid of Pettit and some other front office folks was low-hanging fruit to signal it’s Schoen’s show. The same goes for rolling the dice on Kayvon Thibodeaux’s big personality at No. 5 and declining Daniel Jones’ fifth-year option. Now the hard stuff begins.
String draft aside, the Giants are still going to stink this year. They’re going to end up cutting two of their best defensive players (James Bradberry and Logan Ryan) for nothing. Jones is still injury- and turnover-prone. The offensive line should be better — the bar is on the ground, after all — but how much better? The receiving corps is full of question marks. Et cetera.
And hey, that’s OK. No one expects a playoff team in 2022. But it’s hard to completely dismiss a bad season when a) the GM will likely then need to turn around and get a franchise quarterback and b) co-owner John Mara has fired three straight coaches after two years (or less). So Schoen should enjoy the honeymoon as long as he can — and engender as much good will as possible during it. Because it tends to get late early in the Meadowlands.
James Kratch can be reached at [email protected]