EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. (AP) — Ben McAdoo is staying as coach of the New York Giants, at least until the end of the season.
Giants co-owners John Mara and Steve Tisch issued a statement Monday saying while they are frustrated and disappointed with the Giants’ 1-8 record, they won’t evaluate the team and make any moves until the end of the season.
McAdoo’s future has been a major topic the past two weeks in the wake of a 34-point home loss to the Los Angeles Rams a little more than a week ago, then an embarrassing loss to a San Francisco 49ers team that was winless until Sunday.
The owners said the 40-year-old McAdoo, who led their Giants to their first playoff berth since 2011 in his first season last year, has their support. The Giants have not fired a coach in the middle of the season since 1976.
“We are in the midst of an extremely disappointing season,” the owners said in the statement. “Our performance this year, particularly the past two weeks, is inexcusable and frustrating. While we appreciate that our fans are unhappy with what has occurred, nobody is more upset than we are.
“Our plan is to do what we have always done, which is to not offer a running commentary on the season,” the statement continued. “It is our responsibility to determine the reasons for our poor performance and at the end of the year, we will evaluate the 2017 season in its entirety and make a determination on how we move forward.”
McAdoo was not sure how things would change with the owners’ statement, a move seemingly made to calm things and stop weekly speculation.
“We’ll have to see how everybody responds,” McAdoo said late Monday afternoon. “Again, my focus is as it always is, on the week of preparation, to try to put a good plan together, help these coaches and players any way I can putting a good product on the field, and finding a way to get better.”
The Giants have not done that much this season, and the product had been very ugly the past two weeks. The stadium was more than half empty in the second half of the 51-17 loss to the Rams, and Sunday’s loss had to be rock bottom.
“I am disappointed, but I am determined to find a way to get it fixed,” McAdoo said “That’s where my focus is. No one expected our record to be what it is at this point, or us to be playing the type of football we are playing at this point. But we are, and we are what our record says we are, and the film reflects it. We need to find a way to improve.”
The situation got even tougher for McAdoo last week when two anonymous players were quoted by ESPN as saying he had lost the team, some players had quit, and that players were angry about an inordinate amount of fines.
The coach also caught some flak for suspending cornerbacks Janoris Jenkins and Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie in the last month for violations of team rules. They are both popular with teammates.
McAdoo replaced Tom Coughlin as head coach last year and led the Giants to an 11-5 record in 2016. They were blown out by the Green Bay Packers in the wild-card game.
Much was expected this season with a good defense almost entirely returning and the offense bolstered by the signing of free agent receiver Brandon Marshall and the addition of tight end Evan Engram, the first-round draft pick.
General manager Jerry Reese made a calculated risk to keep a weak offensive line together in hopes that the blockers would blossom.
Almost everything went wrong.
Marshall was a bust, then he and offensive catalyst Odell Beckham Jr. suffered season-ending ankle injuries against the Chargers on Oct. 8 in the team’s fifth straight loss.
The line has been horrible and banged-up for most of the season.
While the defense has played well at times, it has failed to hold fourth-quarter leads early in the season and given up way too many big plays lately.
NOTES: DT Damon Harrison sustained an ankle injury Sunday and is probably going to be limited in practice this week. … OT Justin Pugh aggravated a back injury and is going to have to sit a bit, McAdoo said.
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