Thursday, January 2, 2014
After a season that wasn't as good as a mediocre 7-9 record would indicate, the New York Giants had to make changes. If Tom Coughlin was to remain head coaches, some of his lieutenants were going to have to go. Fox Sports' Mike Garafolo reported that Giants offensive coordinator Kevin Gilbride is set to retire after seven seasons as the head offensive coach with the Giants.(Gilbride spent 2004-2006 as QB coach)
Though the team won two Super Bowls (XLII, XLVI) during Gilbride's tenure as the OC, he was often criticized by fans and the media for his play calling. It led to the less than flattering nickname "Killdrive" that played off his last name.
The 62-yr old is expected to make the announcement official Thursday evening, though this is clearly the case of retiring instead of firing. The Giants had a miserable season on the offensive side of the ball, much of it due to injuries on the offensive line and backfield, but there were also poor play calls, offensive schemes, and one of the worst seasons of Eli Manning's career. The two-time Super Bowl MVP threw a career high and league leading 27 interceptions and was also sacked 39 times, the most of his career.
Manning and head coach Tom Coughlin backed Gilbride and Manning called for his return, but the Giants needed to make a coaching change just as they need to make many on-field personnel moves.
Gilbride was an assistant coach in the NFL for seven season with the Houston Oiler and Jackson Jaguars, the latter of which was with Coughlin. He had one plus seasons as head coach of the San Diego Chargers and was fired six games into the 1998 season. Overall, Gilbride recorded a 6-16 record.
Prior to coming to the Giants, Gilbride was best known for getting punched in the head by then Oilers defensive coordinator Buddy Ryan during a game against the New York Jets in 1993.