The New York Giants is a team with a rich 80-season history. Founded in 1925 by Tim Mara when the National Football League (NFL) was only five years old, they’ve won eight NFL championships, four of which were Super Bowls.
One of the most important transitions in Giants history occurred in 1953 when the team fired their head coach of 23 years, Steve Owen. Replaced by Jim Lee Howell, the team performed extremely well, led by Frank Gifford, their star running back. By 1956, the Giants won their fourth NFL championship, featuring several Hall of Famers like Sam Huff, Roosevelt “Rosey” Brown, Tom Landry, Vince Lombardi and Frank Gifford.
The Greatest Game Ever Played
In 1958, the Giants had a successful year in the books, defeating the Cleveland Browns on their last day of the season. Beating the Browns again in the playoff, they advanced to play against the Baltimore Colts. The game was a nail-biter and served as the first game in NFL history to have a game sent into overtime. Even though they ultimately lost to the Colts that year, the significance of the game remained. The greatest game ever played propelled football into the dominant sport in America.
Establishing Their Home in New Jersey
In 1973, the Giants reached an agreement to play their home games at a dedicated football stadium in East Rutherford, New Jersey. During the development of the new stadium, the Giants were “homeless” for about three years, being dubbed the “orphans of the NFL.” They served as mobiles, playing their home games at the Yale Bowl in Connecticut, so as not to share a stadium with the New York Jets. Eventually, they shared the Shea Stadium with the Jets in 1975 due to the ill-equipped Yale Bowl not having the necessary amenities to accommodate professional football games.
When they finally began playing in their new home stadium, the only perk was the fans and their excitement. Their performance remained subpar until 1979.
The Come Up
For the first time in its history, the Giants hired a general manager after the 1978 season. The contentious search led them to hire George Young, the former assistant coach of the Baltimore Colts. Young hired dynamic players such as Lawrence Taylor and Phil Simms, raising the Giants’ linebacker corps into one of the NFL’s best.
By 1982, Young hired Bill Parcells as the defensive coordinator and head coach of the Giants, and by 1986, they were “the favorites” to win the Super Bowl. They indeed advanced to Super Bowl XXI to win against the Denver Broncos, and Phil Simms took the MVP award after setting a Super Bowl record of completing 88 percent of his passes.
Eight years later, in 1990, the Giants held the record for the best start in their team’s history, winning their first 10 games of the season. Even after Simms went to the sidelines with an injury for the rest of the season, they made it to the Super Bowl, yet again, to play against the Buffalo Bills. Their second Super Bowl was a success, with another MVP award for one of their players, Ottis Anderson.
In 2007, the Giants took on another Super Bowl championship after three consecutive seasons of reaching the playoffs. In Super Bowl XLII, they defeated the New England Patriots 17-14, with their win considered one of the biggest upsets in Super Bowl history. That year, Eli Manning won the MVP award for completing more than half of his passes, along with two touchdowns.
Because the New York Giants’ 2019 schedule will likely be the second-easiest schedule in the NFL, odds are the fans will bet on the team making it to the Super Bowl. Their first game will be in Dallas on September 8th, but that’s the longest they’ll travel the entire season. They’ll play five teams that have new head coaches, including the Jets, Packers, Cardinals, Buccaneers and Dolphins.
In 2019, they also won’t have to play any road games for any consecutive weeks during the season. While they may have visitor games back-to-back, none of them will be travel-intensive. Overall, this season has some promising characteristics that put the Giants in good standing for the chance to go to the playoffs.