The Redskins might look around the NFC East next week and find that not much has changed. Some of the cards may have been shuffled but it appears that the faces remain the same.
The Giants are closing in on promoting Ben McAdoo to head coach, replacing Tom Coughlin. He has been their offensive coordinator for the last two years and he has worked wonders reviving the career of Eli Manning. The organization wanted to hold onto him and they decided the best way to do that was to promote him. It’s not a done deal yet but all reports are that things will be finalized soon.
Other than losing Coughlin and probably adding ex-Dolphins head coach Joe Philbin as their offensive coordinator, there isn’t much of a shakeup in New York. Steve Spagnuolo will remain as the coordinator of a defense that was ranked last in the league (yes, worse than the Saints). General Manager Reese will remain in place despite drafts that have been stunningly bad per this ESPN article.
The Giants have not been to the playoffs in the last four years and have posted double-digit losses in each of the last two years. But co-owners John Mara and Steve Tisch apparently have decided that just a bit of tinkering will do more good than making wholesale changes.
And they should be given some benefit of the doubt. They have two Super Bowl trophies from the last nine years, while no other NFC East team has even made an appearance in The Big One in that time span. The organization has made some blunders hiring coaches in the past but it’s been a long time since they hired Ray Handley.
Still, a team that generally stays away from making any kind of splash in the free agency market needs to draft better. Maybe Reese can improve but, as noted above, he has a long way to go before he even can be considered competent.
Meanwhile, the Eagles “have turned their attention to” Coughlin to be the man to replace Chip Kelly, according to Adam Schefter. This is even further from a done deal than McAdoo’s promotion in New York is but it seems to be the top possibility at the moment.
Seeing Coughlin in Eagles green would be odd, to say the least. He certainly is an established, respected coach who has had success in the past. The old-school Coughlin could be the perfect replacement for Kelly’s “revolutionary” approach to the game. But the “what have you done lately” category does not look good for Coughlin, with the four straight years without a playoffs spot and a 19-29 record in the last three seasons.
He also might be considered a bit old to be taking over a new team. Coughlin will turn 70 about a week before the 2016 season starts. To be sure, he seems to be very sharp and energetic now. But they say that Father Time is undefeated. That usually refers to players but it’s true for all of us.
Despite all of the head-scratching moves (and non-moves), there is no reason for the Redskins to look around and think that the division will continue to remain down if and when the changes (and non-changes) go down. The Cowboys should have Tony Romo and Dez Bryant back (and GM Jerry Jones, too), the Eagles have some talented players, and the Giants are unlikely to fall very far for very long.