Over the past few years, not many of the personnel moves made by Giants general manager Jerry Reese have made sense at the time of their inception. Yet Reese’s nearly flawless track record for assessing talent, which gives him the ability to put together Super Bowl-winning teams, has led to the popular adage among Giants fans; “In Reese We Trust.”
New York rarely makes a splash in free agency. Reese usually targets low-profile players that he finds reliable enough to be plugged into the Giants’ system right away. Last summer, Reese avoided big names and instead brought in punter Steve Weatherford and center David Baas. They were not the sexy pickups fans wanted, but it helped the franchise earn its second Super Bowl in five years.
When it comes to the draft, Reese is a firm believer in selecting the best player available. Often times, if the team has a pressing need at a less important position, Reese will put that need on hold in order to pick up a promising, young talent at a position he places more value in. That’s why the Giants believe you can never have too many defensive ends and cornerbacks.
Reese’s tactics have paid off in the past. He was criticized for selecting an unproven defensive end out of University of South Florida, Jason Pierre-Paul, with the No. 15 selection of the 2010 draft. However, it was Reese who had the last laugh, as Pierre-Paul already has 21 sacks and an All-Pro selection in only two NFL seasons.
However, Reese’s 2009 draft class has failed to meet expectations. Despite having six picks in the first four rounds, the Giants have received little in return.
Most of those draft picks are now entering the final year of their rookie contracts, and their lack of production has put their future with the team in jeopardy. The 2012 season will be “make-or-break” for these fourth-year players.