The Giants selected one of their own to be the new general manager.
Dave Gettleman, a 30-year veteran of NFL personnel who spent the majority of his career — and his most successful seasons — with the Giants, was named to the position that was vacated when Jerry Reese was fired earlier this month. He becomes the team’s fourth general manager since 1979 and, in a way, keeps the chain of succession relatively unbroken from George Young through Ernie Accorsi and Reese. It was Accorsi who advised the Giants during their search process in recent weeks.
“Given where we are as a team, we thought it was important to bring in someone with experience as a general manager and a proven track record,” co-owners John Mara and Steve Tisch said in a statement announcing the appointment. “Dave’s experience is unparalleled. He did an outstanding job as general manager in Carolina, and he was vital to our success during his tenure here. Dave is going to bring his own approach to our organization in how we draft and acquire players through free agency.”
Gettleman, 66, will be formally introduced at a Friday morning news conference. He was considered the favorite for the job as soon as it became available. His relationship with the team and the franchise’s tendency to rely on familiarity when hiring made him the most Giants-y candidate available.
Gettleman served as the general manager for the Panthers from 2013-16 but was dismissed by Carolina this past summer. That made him free to interview with the Giants last week.
The Giants interviewed four potential general managers, three of whom have deep roots with the organization. The others were current interim general manager Kevin Abrams and current vice president of player evaluation Marc Ross. Former NFL personnel executive and current ESPN analyst Louis Riddick was the only outside candidate who interviewed for the position.
According to a source, Abrams will stay on as assistant general manager to Gettleman, a role he filled under Reese.
Gettleman takes the reins of the franchise at a very tumultuous time. With one game to play, the Giants (2-13) already have set a franchise record for losses. They have uncertainty at quarterback with Eli Manning, an opening at head coach and either the second or third pick in the upcoming draft. They also have Odell Beckham Jr., who is unlikely to report to the team next season without a new contract; 2016 first-round pick Eli Apple, who was suspended this week for an altercation with a coach, and a rookie quarterback whom no one has ever seen take a snap in an NFL game.
His decisions in the next few months, in other words, could shape the franchise for years to come — perhaps even beyond Gettleman’s tenure on the job. The Giants would like to see him turn this mess into the type of stability that they have grown used to enjoying.
Gettleman first joined the Giants in the spring of 1998 and was promoted to pro personnel director in the spring of 1999. He stayed in the position 13 years. In 2012, his final season with the Giants, he was the team’s senior pro personnel analyst. It was a step backward in the hierarchy but, he believed, one that would make him more appealing as a general manager candidate.
He was right, and the Panthers — under Accorsi’s guidance — hired him in 2013. In his four seasons there, Carolina was 40-23-1 and won three consecutive NFC South titles. In 2015, Gettleman was named NFL Executive of the Year after the Panthers finished an NFL-best 15-1 and advanced to Super Bowl 50.
Gettleman has been associated with 16 playoff teams in his NFL career and has been a part of seven Super Bowl teams, including three winners. He was with Buffalo in 1990 and 1991, Denver in 1997, the Giants in 2000, 2007 and 2011 and the Panthers in 2015. The Broncos and the 2007 and 2011 Giants won the championship.
MEET DAVE GETTLEMAN
Gettleman, 66, was born in Boston and earned a bachelor’s degree from Springfield (Mass.) College in 1972. He was an offensive tackle on the freshman football team ... He began his football career as a teacher-coach at Spackenkill High School in Poughkeepsie, N.Y. As the head coach (1973-1978, 1980-1981) he led his teams to a pair of league titles. He also spent a season as a volunteer assistant at Cal State Long Beach (1979) … Gettleman joined the faculty of Kingston High School in 1982 and became the head coach in 1984, when he led his team to a Section I Bowl berth … He entered the NFL in 1986 as a scouting department intern for the Bills. He became a full-time scout for Buffalo after the 1987 draft … In 1994 Gettleman joined the scouting department of the Broncos … He joined the Giants in the spring of 1998 as then-pro personnel director Tim Rooney’s assistant. He was promoted to pro personnel director in the spring of 1999 upon Rooney’s retirement … He remained in that role until 2012, his last year with the Giants, when he became the team’s senior pro personnel analyst … In 2013 Gettleman was hired as general manager of the Panthers, serving in that role until this summer.