In his first year as head coach of the Giants, Ben McAdoo already has guided them to more wins than they had in either of the previous two seasons, has them four games over .500 for the first time since 2012, and has them on track to reach the playoffs for the first time since 2011. His brief tenure already has been a positive achievement.
He’s not ready to take a bow, though.
“We haven’t accomplished anything yet,” McAdoo said Monday, a day after the Giants won their fifth straight game. “Seven wins doesn’t get you very far. We need to keep stacking success.”
He’s right, of course. The Giants still are in second place in the NFC East, still have to face all three division opponents and still have to play four of their final six games on the road. It’s just that after so many years of disappointment, a little sip of success can be intoxicating. Meaningful football after Thanksgiving can be disorienting. Winning makes some delirious.
McAdoo won’t allow for any of those side effects.
“The highs are high and the lows are low and you’re going to have to put out three dumpster fires a day,” he said of his first year as head coach. “Other than that, you need to focus on your preparation and get ready for the next opponent.”
Do that enough, and there will be plenty of time to accept the accolades.
Linemen coming back?
The Giants won’t get a clear picture of who’ll be available on their offensive line until the middle of this week.
McAdoo said guard Justin Pugh (knee) was “moving around a little bit at the end of last week” and could rejoin the team in some capacity for Wednesday’s practice. Brett Jones (calf) is expected to work out Wednesday, too.
And what of Marshall Newhouse, who replaced both of them at left guard and left Sunday’s game with a knee injury before returning to finish the game? Said McAdoo, “We’ll have to take a look at him on Wednesday as well.”
McAdoo said receiver Odell Beckham Jr. might have “caught a finger in the turf, stubbed it a little bit” while attempting to catch a low pass from Eli Manning in the third quarter Sunday. Beckham was seen working on his right hand and fingers after Sterling Shepard’s go-ahead touchdown on that same drive . . . Tight end Larry Donnell was inactive because the Giants wanted to have an extra offensive linemen due to injuries. “It’s easier to move a lineman to tight end than it is from tight end to lineman,” McAdoo said . . . Receiver Roger Lewis Jr. is in the concussion protocol . . . The Giants won three consecutive games at home for the first time since 1962 at Yankee Stadium, but McAdoo said he is looking forward to the team’s first road game in more than a month on Sunday against the Browns. “It’s an exciting week for our guys,” he said. “Any time you get a chance to get on the road and bond and spend some time together, some quality time together that way, your team has a chance to grow and get closer.”