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Giants’ decision to have ‘best players’ on special teams unit deserves questioning

Joe Judge has sent a strong message since the day he took over as head coach of the New York Giants, but it’s fair to wonder if he’s going a bit too far.

It’s one thing to make players run laps when they make a mistake at practice, but it’s another to have coaches and staffers follow the same protocol, which Judge has had them do. He also appears to be treating players like their in college, ordering them around in an authoritative manner.

Judge comes from the Bill Belichick school of coaching, so it’s no surprise he acts this way, but this style hasn’t worked out well for others in the past. There’s only one Belichick as far as we know, and until others can replicate his success, that style may not go over well with players. That style can wear on them, and if it’s not translating to wins, it may not go over well in the locker room.

And Judge really seems to expect the most of his players. In fact, he and his coaching staff are even having his “best player” suit up for special teams duties, which most other teams avoid doing, not wanting to risk potential injury. Giants special teams coach Thomas McGaughey spoke about the team’s decision during a video conference call to reporters on Tuesday.

“That’s a playmaking position,” he said, via “You are trying to put guys back there that are going to make plays. To me, that’s no different than the quarterback position, the wide receiver position, the running back position.

“You are trying to put guys in a position that you want to make plays. The game has come down to primarily punt and punt return to get the most plays during those two. You want to be able to maximize the field position by being able to make plays and put your best players back there.”

It’s important to note that Judge comes from a special teams background, but being a head coach requires factoring in all potential outcomes in making decisions, and maybe potentially risking the health of his best players isn’t the best move to make.