Despite their progression throughout the season, the New York Giants face another issue as Dave DeGuglielmo will not be returning as the offensive line coach. There is a chance he returns, however, it is unlikely after the two sides did not reach an agreement on a contract.
Since the Giants fired Pat Flaherty in 2015, they have gone through four coaches for this position group. Mike Solari, Hal Hunter, Marc Colombo, and now DeGuglielmo.
For this young offensive line to grow, they need coaching stability rather than a coach in and out the door every year. With coaches and staff members being let go, there are many different offensive line coaches on the market. Here are three qualified candidates that can replace DeGuglielmo.
New York Giants: Candidates to Replace Offensive Line Coach Dave DeGuglielmo
(New York Giants Assistant O-Line Coach, 2018-present)
Starting out on familiar grounds, Ben Wilkerson is definitely a qualified candidate for the vacancy. In 2018, Giants’ head coach Pat Shurmur hired Hal Hunter and Wilkerson to coach the offensive line. After the Giants fired Shurmur and most of his staff, they decided to keep Wilkerson as the assistant offensive line coach.
Wilkerson survived the Colombo massacre which was when head coach Joe Judge and offensive line coach Marc Colombo got into a heated exchange about Colombo doing his job the right way. Dave DeGuglielmo took over soon after with Wilkerson alongside him.
Ben Wilkerson is the most qualified when it comes to continuity with the current group of linemen. When Dave DeGuglielmo missed Week 17 because of COVID-19, Wilkerson filled in as the position coach. His group only gave up two sacks (one on Kaden Smith, one on Kevin Zeitler) against a furious Dallas defensive line. The offensive line also helped pave the way for 125 rushing yards on the ground, while keeping Daniel Jones upright.
As though mentioned about Colombo when he arrived, Wilkerson is a former player and has gone through the motions as an offensive lineman. Sticking with someone who knows the players as well as he does may be the best option for the Giants in order to keep the chemistry going.
(Philadelphia Eagles O-Line Coach, 2013-2020)
A key in coaching hires, Jeff Stoutland has familiarity with head coach Joe Judge. The two spent the 2011 season as a part of Nick Saban’s staff at Alabama. Since 2013, Stoutland has been the offensive line coach for the Philadelphia Eagles. However, it remains unclear if the Eagles will keep Stoutland under new head coach Nick Sirianni.
Besides the talent, Stoutland has been a reason as to why the Eagles’ offensive line thrives. They have been at the top of the league in every rank in past seasons. Unfortunately in 2020, all of the injuries piled up, resulting in 12 different combos. Jason Peters, Andre Dillard, Lane Johnson, and Brandon Brooks suffered season-ending injuries. A veteran coach can only do the best with the talent he has.
Despite the 2020 failure, Jeff Stoutland is a name to log if you are the New York Giants.
(Atlanta Falcons O-Line Coach, 2015-2020)
The Atlanta Falcons decided not to retain Chris Morgan, the offensive line coach, a few days after hiring Tennessee Titans’ offensive coordinator Arthur Smith. In 2015, Kyle Shanahan brought Morgan over to coach the offensive line when Dan Quinn hired Shanahan as the offensive coordinator.
Chris Morgan, when he first arrived in Atlanta, played a factor in Jake Matthew’s uprising development in 2015. During the Falcons’ attempted Super Bowl run in 2016, the offensive line ranked among the top ten units in the league. The group kept Matt Ryan upright, gave him time to throw, and blew holes for running backs, Devonta Freeman and Tevin Coleman. Free-agent acquisitions Andy Levitre and Alex Mack contributed to the offensive line’s outstanding play.
After their Super Bowl loss, the Falcons regressed heavily and failed to keep offensive line talent around Matt Ryan. However, Morgan helped coach rookies Chris Lindstrom and Kaleb McGary into starting roles in 2019.
Hiring Morgan will help this young offensive line take the next step as a unit.