The Tom Coughlin era in New York is over.
Coughlin stepped down Monday as head coach of the Giants after a disappointing season ended with a loss to the Philadelphia Eagles, the team announced.
The Giants sputtered to a 6-10 record and failed to win an NFC East that was wide open for the majority of the season. New York blew fourth-quarter leads in the final minute of games five times this season, dooming the team’s postseason chances.
“I met with John Mara and Steve Tisch this afternoon, and I informed them that it is in the best interest of the organization that I step down as head coach,” Coughlin said in a statement. “I strongly believe the time is right for me and my family, and as I said, the Giants organization.
It has been an honor and a privilege to serve as head coach of the New York Football Giants. This is a not a sad occasion for me. I have spent 15 years with this organization as an assistant and head coach and was fortunate to be part of three Super Bowl winning teams. A Lombardi Trophy every five years is an achievement in which we all take great pride.”
Coughlin, 69, was the second longest-tenured coach in the NFL and the third-longest with one team, behind Bill Belichick of the New England Patriots and Marvin Lewis of the Cincinnati Bengals. Coughlin won two Super Bowl titles with the Giants in 2007 and 2011, both times beating the Patriots.
Now New York needs to decide whether to go forward with a full-scale rebuild, or whether to add pieces to what is a depleted roster.
Other than quarterback Eli Manning, receiver Odell Beckham Jr. and defensive end Jason Pierre-Paul – who is set to become an unrestricted free agent this offseason – the Giants lack significant star power.
General manager Jerry Reese, who is largely responsible for constructing the team, appears to be safe in his role, as the Giants are one of the most patient and stable franchises in the NFL. But if Reese doesn’t improve the team’s talent and continues to miss on draft picks, his job may soon be in question.
Manning is locked in to a long-term contract that was signed this offseason, and he might be one reason why this job could appeal to several candidates. Coupled with Beckham’s explosiveness, the pair have had very productive seasons in New York under offensive coordinator Ben McAdoo’s West Coast offense.
Coughlin leaves the NFL with a combined record of 170-150, spanning 20 seasons in the league with the Giants and Jacksonville Jaguars.