In his short time as GM of the Giants, Jerry Reese has been nearly flawless in his decision-making. Seemingly digging up "diamond in the rough" after "diamond in the rough"—players other general managers have overlooked, and letting them shine on the field as members of the New York Giants.
Here's a list of players Reese has drafted or signed during his one-plus-year tenure as Giants GM:
All of the players in the above list either played significant roles on the road to the Giants Super Bowl victory, or are playing significant roles on the team this year, or have extremely high upside.
Furthermore, on top of finding great players, Reese was able to keep highly in-demand defensive coordinator, Steve Spagnuolo, after winning the Super Bowl.
In addition to the two incredible years of drafting and free agent signings, Reese made his boldest, and perhaps best move as Giants GM this summer—trading Jeremy Shockey.
Let me start off by saying that I was the last person in favor of this decision, and when Reese decided to trade Shockey, I was heart broken.
To me, Shockey represents everything that you want in a football player: passion, enthusiasm, work ethic, desire to win, and fearlessness. However, Reese knew that regardless of how much talent Shockey has, there was no way Shockey would be able to put his pride aside and rejoin the Giants after they won the Super Bowl without him.
Now, as this season has progressed, as much as I love(d) Shockey, I love Jerry Reese's decision to trade him even more. Kevin Boss has emerged as a more than serviceable tight end, while Shockey continues to cause problems and is unable to stay healthy.
Thus far in the 2008 season, Shockey and Boss have similar stats. Shockey has 24 catches for 223 yards and zero TDs, while Boss has 19 catches for 217 yards and four TDs. Personally, I'd rather have a TE that catches touchdown passes instead of a TE that gains yardage.
In addition, when Boss doesn't get the ball, he doesn't complain, when Eli misses him on a pass, he doesn't come back to the huddle waving his hands. He works hard, blocks, and catches passes when called upon. On a team loaded with receiving depth at wide receiver, I couldn't think of a better tight end to have on this team.
Thus, Jerry Reese has managed to find a better tight end, at least for the Giants. In addition, while doing so, he was able to obtain a second round and fifth round draft pick. Two draft picks that will undoubtedly turn into bright Giant stars, thanks to Reese's drafting savvy.
So, thus far during Jerry Reese's tenure as GM, the Giants have obtained better players and have built a team for the future (gotten younger). Oh yeah, and Jerry Reese did this while the Giants won the Super Bowl—an almost impossible feat.
On behalf of all Giants fans, I thank you Jerry Reese. You truly are a pure football genius.