Posted on January 22, 2018, by Bryan Zarpentine

Pat Shurmur

Image via nydailynews.com

Now that the Minnesota Vikings have been knocked out of the playoffs, offensive coordinator Pat Shurmur is finally free to become the new head coach of the New York Giants. Shurmur interviewed with the Giants while the Vikings had a bye the first weekend of the playoffs. The two sides reportedly reached an agreement last week. However, they couldn’t make it official until Minnesota’s season was over. An official announcement that Shurmur will coach the Giants appears inevitable and will likely happen later this week.

Even after Sunday’s NFC Championship Game, Shurmur would not comment on his move to the Giants. He made it clear that he’d be heading back to Minnesota with the Vikings on Monday.

“(Monday) we meet with the players and send them off the right way,” Shurmur said after Sunday’s game. “Then we get to the business of the offseason and making ourselves better. As coaches, we get right back in the moment. The moment is let’s fly back to Minnesota, let’s meet with the players in the morning and all go through our little exits.”

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When it eventually becomes official, the Giants will be Shurmur’s second head coaching job. He also had a two-year stint as head coach of the Cleveland Browns in 2011 and 2012. T Browns were just 9-23 during Shurmur’s two seasons, making his tenure in Cleveland brief. However, five years later, Shurmur is getting a second chance to be a head coach.

Outside of his two years with the Browns, Shurmur has long been one of the most respected offensive coordinators in the NFL. He’s been lauded for his work with quarterbacks. Shurmur has been credited with the development of longtime NFL starters Donovan McNabb and Sam Bradford. He has also worked with Nick Foles, who is set to lead the Eagles into the Super Bowl.

Of course, his best work may have been done this past season. Shurmur worked wonders with Case Keenum during the 2017 campaign. He helped turn Keenum from a career backup into a quarterback who helped guide the Vikings to the NFC Championship Game.

The Giants, of course, are hoping that Shurmur can work some of his quarterback magic for them. There is uncertainty over whether or not Eli Manning will be with the team next season. Even if he is, the Giants are expected to take a quarterback with the 2nd overall pick in this year’s draft. It will be on Shurmur to help develop that young quarterback into the future of the franchise.

There has also been speculation that Keenum, who is a free agent after the season, will follow Shurmur wherever he becomes a head coach. However, with renewed optimism that Manning will stay in New York, Keenum signing with the Giants seems unlikely.

Regardless of who plays quarterback for the Giants next season, Shurmur’s plate will be full. The Giants went 3-13 in 2017 and share a division with the NFC champion Eagles. With the return of Dave Gettleman as the team’s new GM, there is some level of optimism that the Giants can get things turned around. However, when he is officially hired as the new head coach of the Giants later this week, Shurmur will have a lot of work ahead of him.

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