The final piece of offseason business has been completed.
Tom Coughlin has signed an extension that will take him through the 2014 season, the Giants announced on Wednesday. The new deal adds two seasons to his previous contract, which was due to expire after the upcoming season.
The Giants had said all offseason that they were working on an extension with Coughlin. Now, after they have pretty much finalized their roster heading into training camp with the signing of all of their draft picks, a restructured deal for Osi Umenyiora, an extension for Mathias Kiwanuka and other personnel moves, they have finished their to-do list with the Coughlin deal.
"It has always been my belief that it is an honor and a privilege to be the head coach of the New York Giants," said Coughlin who, at 65, is the oldest head coach in the NFL and will be 68 at the end of his new deal. "I'm thankful to John Mara and Steve Tisch and their families for their support and the recognition of what our players and coaches have accomplished. And I'm grateful for the working relationship [general manager] Jerry Reese and I have. We've got a lot of work left to do."
Coughlin is coming off his second Super Bowl with the Giants. He is entering his ninth year as head coach, the second-longest tenure in franchise history behind Hall of Famer Steve Owen. He will almost certainly move past Bill Parcells into second place all-time in regular season head coaching wins with the Giants in the upcoming season. Coughlin has 74, Parcells has 77, and Owen, who coached for 24 years, has 153.
Of course, if the Giants had their way, Coughlin's extension would not only go forward in time but backwards too.
"I wanted Tom as our head coach going all the way back to the early '90s," team president and CEO John Mara said. "So it was with great confidence that Ernie Accorsi and I recommended to my father [Wellington Mara] and Bob Tisch in 2004 that we hire Tom. Of course, my father didn't need to be convinced. He saw what we have all seen, a man who has a singular focus and incredible dedication when it comes to his work. In so many ways, Tom represents to me who and what the head coach of our franchise should be."
"Tom is the right person in the right job at the right time," added team chairman Steve Tisch. "I just really appreciate how our players respond to his leadership, and obviously our organization has benefitted tremendously because of the relationship Tom has with his players."
It was only seven months ago that Coughlin's future with the team was much more tenuous. With the team 7-7 heading into the final two games of the regular season and in danger of missing the playoffs for the second straight season, there were many who believed a loss to the Jets on Christmas Eve might have been too much of an indignity for the franchise to suffer. The Giants won that game and the following five as well, including Super Bowl XLVI over the Patriots. That run of six straight wins propelled Coughlin from the proverbial hot seat to instant consideration as a Hall of Famer.
In 16 seasons as an NFL head coach -- eight each with the Jacksonville Jaguars and the Giants -- Coughlin is 142-114 (.557) in the regular season and 12-7 (.632) in the postseason for an overall record of 154-121 (.560). The 142 regular-season victories tie him with new St. Louis Rams head coach Jeff Fisher for 19th place on the all-time list. Coughlin's 154 total victories tie him with Hall of Famer Marv Levy for 17th on the NFL's career list. His 12 postseason victories tie him with Bill Cowher for the sixth-highest total in NFL history.
The Giants' six-year streak without a losing record is the longest since they had 10 in a row from 1954-63. Coughlin has led the Jaguars and the Giants to five division titles and nine playoff berths combined.
"Tom is a winner and he's a fighter," Reese said. "And I enjoy and appreciate working with him. From where I sit, I couldn't ask for more in a head coach."