MOBILE, Ala. — When the Giants moved on from Pat Shurmur and much of his coaching staff, many fans dreamed of one name as the next offensive line coach: Bill Callahan. However, as soon as Jason Garrett was named offensive coordinator, the reality is those dreams became exactly that and nothing more.
Callahan took the Cleveland Browns offensive line coach job Monday after the Giants expressed interest, which isn’t particularly surprising.
There are many reasons to like the Giants’ hiring Garrett, particularly his wealth of experience and track record as a head coach as a resource and sounding board for rookie Giants head coach Joe Judge. Same for Garrett’s ability to develop young quarterbacks such as Tony Romo and Dak Prescott, now overseeing Daniel Jones’ pivotal first offseason.
If the Giants wanted to hire Callahan, they likely needed to make him the offensive coordinator or at least have hired just about anyone else in that position other than Garrett.
Garrett and Callahan previously worked together with the Cowboys, when Callahan served as offensive coordinator 2012-2014, preceding a messy divorce from the team.
Still, some fans held out hope that because Garrett praised him in the past, a reunion might be in the works.
“Bill did a fantastic job,” Garrett said in 2015, via the Fort Worth Star-Telegram. “Bill is a great football coach. I just thought he did a great job with that offensive line. He and the offensive staff did a fantastic job with the running game. Bill is the architect of it, but the contributions by Frank Pollack, Mike Pope and Gary Brown, that was a big piece to the puzzle for us.”
After taking over calling plays from Garrett in 2013, Callahan was stripped of those duties in favor of Scott Linehan the following season. That offseason, multiple teams such as the Browns and Jacksonville Jaguars wanted to hire Callahan, but Garrett and the Cowboys blocked him from interviewing.
It’s easy to see why Callahan wouldn’t have working with Garrett again on the top of his wishlist.
Callahan was hired by Washington in 2015 as the offensive line coach, and served as the interim head coach for the final 11 games this season, following Jay Gruden’s firing on Oct. 7 following an 0-5 start.
Gruden was high on Jones prior to last year’s draft, and it isn’t unreasonable to believe that Gruden and Callahan might have reunited with the Giants had Gruden been hired as offensive coordinator.
With Garrett tasked with overseeing the offense, the Giants still have a void at offensive line coach, but that could ultimately be filled by Dave DeGuglielmo, who will interview for the position this week.
DeGuglielmo, 51, is well-traveled after four one-year stints in the past five years, and previously won a Super Bowl with the Giants in 2007 and another alongside Judge and Giants left tackle Nate Solder with the New England Patriots in 2014.
Prior to getting fired by Indianapolis Colts head coach Frank Reich in 2018, DeGuglielmo turned rookie Quenton Nelson into an All-Pro guard and helped right tackle Braden Smith land a spot on the second-team All-Rookie team.
The Giants are looking for a veteran coach to help turnaround a moribund offensive line that includes Solder, former second-round pick Will Hernandez at left guard, former All-Pro Kevin Zeitler at right guard, but uncertainty at center and right tackle. Judge and Garrett might find DeGuglielmo’s resumé impressive enough to overlook his lack of staying power at his recent jobs.
Likewise, the Senior Bowl is a de-facto coaching convention and with Judge, Garrett, and the entire Giants’ personnel department in Mobile with a slew of coaches looking for gainful employment, DeGuglielmo might just be one of the candidates for the pivotal position.
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