LOS ANGELES -- Ask Michael Irvin a simple question and you get a simple answer.
In this case, the query was: How would you fix the Giants’ offense?
"Dude," the Hall of Fame receiver and NFL Network analyst laughingly told Newsday on Wednesday at Super Bowl LVI, "we don’t have the time to go through all of that."
Irvin is so convinced the Giants are a lost cause – and have been for some time – that two years ago he tried to dissuade former Cowboys head coach Jason Garrett from taking the job as their offensive coordinator.
"I was like ‘Oooh, I don’t know about that one, man,’" Irvin said. "He’s such a fighter. He’s a winner. He wanted to go and do it. He said ‘I’m a coach, it’s what I do. I can fix it. I can fix it.’ I said to him then, ‘I don’t know if you can fix it.’
"And I’m saying this to you now: ‘I don’t know if I can fix it.’"
Fellow NFL Network analyst Steve Mariucci was only slightly less pessimistic about the Giants’ situation, even with the addition of head coach Brian Daboll and offensive coordinator Mike Kafka from two of the top-scoring teams in the NFL, Buffalo and Kansas City, respectively.
Mariucci told Newsday he thinks quarterback Daniel Jones can be a winner but noted that he says so "with some reservation."
"Like any quarterback you have to have a supporting cast," Mariucci said. "It was a shame that Saquon Barkley was hurt and it’s a shame that they had some offensive line failures. That roster needs to improve, let’s face it."
So, too, does Jones, and he doesn’t have much time to do so. With one year left on his rookie contract and the Giants unlikely to pick up a fifth-year option in May, he’s basically playing the 2022 season on a prove-it deal.
"There’s nothing fair," Mariucci said, "It’s just how it is. He’s got to do the best he can with what they have."
The Giants are going to be hard pressed to build a solid infrastructure around Jones in just one offseason. With little salary cap space for free agents and the potential for drafting players who will have to go through rookie learning curves, the immediate future for the Giants may be just as bleak as the last few years have been.
"If Daniel Jones has a better offensive line, has some more weapons on offense, maybe," Mariucci said. "And then it comes down to him not playing catch-up so the defense has to keep him in games or keep it close so he is not having to throw the ball so much.
"We’ll see how that goes," Mariucci said. "The jury is still out. I’m rooting for him."