When the New York Giants hired head coach Joe Judge, nobody expected him to have the impact he ultimately did in his first season. The Giants were a complete disaster when Judge took over, hosting a traumatized culture and locker room, desperately in search of discipline and accountability.
Judge, a disciple of Bill Belichick and a structured New England front office, came in guns blazing. Not only did he establish a culture that demanded respect, but he made the proper coaching hires to back up his opening statements.
In just one season, the Giants saw their defense climb into the top 10 in the NFL in points allowed per game, thanks to fantastic coaching and personnel moves. However, the offense struggled to get going, as quarterback Daniel Jones was given little to work with in terms of protection in the trenches and weapons to appropriate.
When star running back Saquon Barkley went down in week two, the Giants’ offense was already set up for failure. Their offensive line ranked 31st in pass blocking efficiency, while their receivers ranked as one of the worst units in separation yards per route. Judge only had so much magic, and he managed to drag a defense into the top 10, which demands respect.
The New York Giants made a great hire, but not according to some:
Some, though, would argue that Judge is one of the worst coaches in the NFL after just one season. Referencing the Giants’ overall record in a terrible NFC East, one NBC reporter believes that Judge couldâ€™ve already hit his ceiling as a head coach.
NBC Sportsâ€™ Patrick Daugherty gave his ranking for every coach in the NFL, and it seems he has never enjoyed the likes of Joe Judge and his disciplinary ways. If Judge stumbles across this article, I wouldn’t be surprised if he made good ole’ Patrick run laps on his off-time.
Joe Judge began his Giants career with bits. No names on jerseys, etc. It made him an easy punchline for a slumping organization. Things started off equally poorly during the regular season, where Judgeâ€™s squad produced 0-5 and 1-7 records. The second half was much better, with the G-Men closing 5-3 and coming within a Nate Sudfeld cameo of winning their pathetic division. With offense exploding league wide, the Giants were a rare bulwark for the other side of the ball, surrendering 94 fewer points than the year prior. That was the ninth best mark in football after three seasons of finishing 23rd or worse. The problem was Judgeâ€™s offense, which showed zero second-year improvement under erratic starter Daniel Jones. The front office is throwing weapons at the issue, but it will fall to Judge to make lemonade out of Jonesâ€™ lemons. Judge can sometimes feel like a â€œfootball guyâ€ parody â€” he took the Sudfeld thing just a little too personally â€” though he has successfully toed the line of instilling a hard-nosed attitude while keeping his playersâ€™ respect. Thereâ€™s a chance 2020 was Judgeâ€™s ceiling. The fact it wasnâ€™t the floor campaign so many were expecting was a surprising, encouraging development.