The trip from Quest Diagnostics Training Center to MetLife Stadium takes just two or three minutes, yet the idea of Brian Dabol hit hard late Friday afternoon. He saw people in parking lots wearing LT, Eli and Saquon jerseys, and allowed himself a temporary break from the daily grind.
The head coach of the New York Giants, was about to lead an NFL team to the NFL stadium for the first time.
“Just driving around and seeing the fan base here and you’re like, ‘It’s a really cool history and humbling moment for me to be in this position,'” Daboll told The Post. Yes, it was a bunch of first things. I even thought it was just practice, a bunch of early adopters.”
It would be silly to attach any importance to the blue and white brawl that doubled as a MetLife fan fest. About 26,000 people gathered to watch Daniel Jones do some good and some not so good against his defense, and maybe half of those fans were just looking for something to do while letting the traffic cool off before they drove away late at night to the beach.
But they showed up to watch something that was somewhat meaningless and made a lot of sense to their rookie coach. At 47, Daboll had never managed a team at any level. He started as a volunteer assistant at William & Mary, and worked his way up to the staff of Bill Belichick and Nick Saban before riding his success as a Bills attack coordinator into the big job with the Giants.
He said in June, “I’ve done this for 25 years, so it’s not like I’ve been a coach for five years and got into a hot swing. This is 25 years in the making, a lot of good successes and some failures that you learn from. A lot of ‘Nos’, and a lot of not getting jobs. So I thank my lucky superstars every day for being…the head coach of the soccer team, not to mention the New York Football Giants. What an honor.”
This honor had left a mark on him prior to this intra-group brawl. After he finished training in the field and asking questions in the press conference room, Daboll was walking down the MetLife aisle when asked if the occasion meant anything to him. He paused, looking about to get emotional.
“It’s hard to put into words,” he told The Post. “It was a different feeling when I got on the field for the first time as head coach, entering the coach’s office instead of a big room with the assistants. I kind of sat there before the fight. He’s humble. It’s very humble. I understand the role, and I just want to do well for our organization and base. our fans.
“But it was definitely a great moment for me.”
No one knew what Daboll would be like as head coach, just as no one knew what another rookie, Joe Judge, would be like first time. The judge wasn’t a disaster – he just wrote his catastrophic ending. But even an amateur detective can scan recent quotes from commentary Judge players and determine that they prefer (so far) the way Daboll manages the process, from his energy to his communication methods to the freedom he gives his outside makers, you know, make plays.
A source for the giants with deep and longstanding ties to the organization said, “The entire building loves Daboll.” Asked if the majority of the veteran giants seem to be making it clear that they appreciate Daboll’s management style to Judge, the source said, “One hundred percent. They make no attempt to hide that.”
Tyrod Taylor, a 12-year-old veteran who wasn’t a jury member but has seen so many coaches come and go, said Daboll impressed him every day by leading the locker room and boardrooms and in the way he earned the team’s respect.
“It does a great job of keeping everyone involved, but also not withholding information,” Taylor said. “He’s live with us.”
Of course, this player’s connection wouldn’t matter if he didn’t appear on the scoreboard. Given that the Giants have lost 10 or more games in five consecutive seasons, it’s clear that Daboll must teach his team how to win. In order to do that, he said, he’s tried to create a very competitive environment in every aspect of his program “whether it’s in the cafeteria, while walking, in the locker room. It’s all about competition. … We’re committed to the process of trying to improve and to do things in a way.” specific”.
Coaches are so caught up in the process that they often don’t break with it and appreciate the little things for the big things that they really are. But on Friday night, during a trip in early August that didn’t even go a mile, and in the short time spent in the head coach’s office before the Fan Fest brawl, Brian Daboll allowed himself to feel something he had never felt in his country. Football life.
This should be noted…just in case Tom Coughlin or Bill Parcells becomes the next.