On Wednesday afternoon, the Giants called Ben McAdoo and asked him to come in for a second interview on Thursday morning. Hue Jackson, originally scheduled to meet with the team at that time as the final candidate in the first round of interviews for head coach, already had decided to take the same job in Cleveland.
The trouble was that McAdoo couldn’t make that appointment, either. He was going to Philadelphia on Thursday for a second interview with the Eagles.
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That’s when the Giants decided to bring McAdoo in right away. He met with ownership on Wednesday night and was offered the job as 17th head coach of the Giants. A four-year contract was hammered out and the official announcement was made Thursday afternoon.
John Mara was quick to note that the Eagles’ interest in McAdoo did not affect the team’s decision, just the timing of it.
“All that did was accelerate the timing of the second interview,” Mara said Friday. “After talking to the guys in the first round, he was still my favorite and Jerry [Reese]’s also.”
If Jackson had come to New York for his interview, would McAdoo have been introduced as the new head coach of the Eagles on Friday? “Possibly,” Mara said.
But it’s unlikely. McAdoo preferred the Giants’ job, and he probably would have come back and given them a chance to match had he gotten an offer from the NFC East rival Eagles.
“Did I think I would be the new Eagles head coach?” he said without actually answering his own question. “I’m very happy to be a New York Giant. This is home for me and my family and we look forward to the challenge here.”
McAdoo wasn’t the only Giants coach being wooed by the Eagles. Tom Coughlin also interviewed for the job before withdrawing from consideration.
“I’m not going to lie, it would have been like watching Bill Parcells walk out on the field with a star on his shirt,” Mara said of the possibility of Coughlin coaching the Eagles. “That was tough to see at the time and that would have bothered me . . . I want to be happy, but I certainly didn’t want to see him happy in green.”