Giants general manager Joe Schoen speaks during a news conference...

Giants general manager Joe Schoen speaks during a news conference at the team's training facility on Wednesday in East Rutherford, N.Y. Credit: AP/John Minchillo

Given how far the Giants have fallen and how long they have now occupied their dreaded status as one of the NFL’s worst teams, the words that Joe Schoen heard from Bill Parcells were encouraging, if not downright decision-swaying.

Before Schoen had been chosen from a field of nine candidates to become the team’s general manager and tasked with rebuilding a perennial loser for most of the last decade, the iconic former Giants’ coach shared a sentiment that may have surprised him. Especially given that the team has been adrift since last winning a Super Bowl during the 2011 season.

When I asked Schoen on Wednesday during his introductory news conference about Parcells’ impact on his career, especially that Schoen has known Parcells for nearly two decades and worked for him in Miami, his response was quite revealing. It made you realize why the former Bills’ assistant manager was so interested in coming to a team in need of this much repair.

"Yeah, he told me it’s the best job in the league," Schoen said of Parcells. "That was some of the advice he gave me when I talked to him."

The words were deeply meaningful for Schoen, who needed to know exactly what he was getting into by stepping into the country’s biggest media market after serving as Bills GM Brandon Beane’s chief lieutenant in Buffalo. He hung onto Parcells’ every word because of how impactful the Giants’ two-time Super Bowl winning coach has been in his life.

"I know why he was such a good coach, because he understood personnel and he understood the X’s and O’s, and he was a great teacher," Schoen said. "He would say, ‘You know what Tom Landry used to tell me, Joe?’ I’m just a young scout [with the Panthers], and you’re on the edge of your seat, like Tom Landry told Bill Parcells, and he’s getting ready to tell me. All the stories he has, he understood personnel."

He learned so much from Parcells, who was first introduced to Schoen through former Panthers offensive coordinator and longtime Parcells friend and fellow coach Dan Henning. But what he gleaned most was how to construct an NFL roster from the ground up.

The Giants introduced their new general manager Joe Schoen at a news conference on Wednesday. Shoen discussed his vision for quarterback Daniel Jones and the offense, as well as what he's looking for in a head coach.

"He understood personnel," the 42-year-old Schoen said. "Philosophically, maybe he’s a little bit different. He hasn’t evolved to where maybe the game is today, but I learned a lot from him just how to build a roster, what to look for in different positions, what to look for in head coaches."

And there was this foundational belief that Parcells imparted on Schoen, something that the first-year GM will use throughout his tenure with the Giants, however long – or brief – that might be.

"You better know what you want on your roster, because coaches are going to come and go," Schoen said. "It’s just the volatility of the industry."

Words that resonate with Schoen, especially as he ponders his first major decision in his new role. The Giants’ coaching search is nearing its conclusion, five men in the mix: Bills coordinators Brian Daboll (offense) and Leslie Frazier (defense); former Dolphins coach Brian Flores, Cowboys defensive coordinator Dan Quinn and Giants defensive coordinator Patrick Graham. He wasn’t tipping his hand about which direction he might lean, although Daboll appears to be the frontrunner, especially with his successful background in building the Bills’ offense.

"All of our candidates bring a different skillset to the table," Schoen said. "I’m not concerned if they’ve been a head coach or if they haven’t. I’m concerned with getting the best head coach for the New York Giants … It’s going to be imperative that it’s somebody that’s in lockstep with me that I can work with and we’re going to be aligned in our division as we build a football team."

It is a herculean task that awaits Schoen. The Giants were 4-13 and losers of their last six games in 2021, and there is a disturbing lack of talent left behind by erstwhile GM Dave Gettleman. Schoen and team president John Mara expressed continued support for quarterback Daniel Jones, but going into Year 4, he simply hasn’t shown the ability to become a dominant quarterback. He will be on his fourth offensive coordinator next season.

Saquon Barkley hasn’t been the same since his dynamic rookie year, and there is still a lack of firepower at receiver and tight end. Oh, and the offensive line? There is one good player – left tackle Andrew Thomas. The defense has some pieces – Leonard Williams, safeties Xavier McKinney and Logan Ryan, returning middle linebacker Blake Martinez, cornerback James Bradberry and defensive tackle Dexter Lawrence are part of the solution. But more talent and more depth are urgently needed.

This may be the best job in football, as Parcells told Schoen, but it’s certainly not the best roster. The Hall of Fame coach has a continued affinity for his favorite childhood team, the team he brought back from the depths of despair with two Super Bowl championships after he grew up and grew into a brilliant field general. And he wants nothing more than to see Schoen help restore the greatness that once defined this franchise.

Now comes the heavy lifting: Find the right coach and find the right players to make it happen.

It will not happen overnight, and Schoen knows it can only happen with hard work.

"All I can tell you is I’m going to work as hard as I can, I’m going to get the best people in the building, I’m going to try to get the best players we can that are going to make everybody proud on and off the field," Schoen said.

Giants fans turn their lonely eyes to you, Joe Schoen. Their hopes and dreams now rest with your ability to carry out the vision that can lead back to respectability.

And another Vince Lombardi Trophy.