Dave Gettleman

Dave Gettleman’s Cancer Is In Remission

Dave Gettleman’s cancer is in remission, Paul Schwartz of the New York Post writes. Gettleman has been sharing the positive news with those close to him over the past few days.

Gettleman, 67, revealed in June that he had been diagnosed with a cancer of the lymphatic system. Thankfully, after a course of chemotherapy treatments, Gettleman is now in the clear. It is expected that he’ll continue treatments for the time being, Schwartz writes, but he is in a much better place than he was just weeks ago.

In December, the Giants hired Gettleman to be the fourth GM in club history. With 30 years of experience and a close relationship with ex-GM Ernie Accorsi, Gettleman was a natural fit for the position.

Giants Reshuffle Front Office

Six months into the Dave Gettleman regime, the Giants reorganized their front office on Wednesday. The headline move involved longtime Giants exec Kevin Abrams moving from the assistant GM title to the VP of football operations. But Big Blue made many other moves as well.

Former Panthers exec Mark Koncz joined his former boss as a consultant this offseason, but Gettleman established the longtime Carolina staffer as the Giants’ new director of player personnel, the team announced. Additionally, Chris Pettit is now the Giants’ director of college scouting, moving to that role after spending 13 years as an area scout.

Koncz worked for the Panthers from 1994, a year before their first season, until he was fired one week after Gettleman’s ouster last summer. Koncz served as Carolina’s director of player personnel during Gettleman’s tenure and spent nearly 15 years as the franchise’s director of pro scouting. Pettit’s worked in a full-time role with the franchise since 2005 but began his run with the Giants as an intern in 1998.

Former Giants linebacker Jessie Armstead will serve as special assistant to Gettleman, Patrick Hanscomb will shift from a role in the pro personnel department to a job as an area scout, specializing in the Mid-Atlantic region, and the Giants hired Marcus Cooper over from the Bills. He’ll serve as an area scout as well, working in the southeast. Cooper worked with the Bills for seven years, most recently serving as Buffalo’s Combine scout.

Ed Triggs will work as the Giants’ football operations coordinator, with Ty Siam assigned to football ops/data analytics. Charles Tisch will be a football operations assistant.

With Gettleman being diagnosed with lymphoma, Paul Schwartz of the New York Post anticipates Abrams’ role increasing and sees the team’s cap expert and chief negotiator looming as a logical successor to the current GM at some point.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

East Notes: Eagles, Wentz, Pats, Gronk

Good news for Eagles quarterback Carson Wentz. Based on what he is hearing, ESPN.com’s Chris Mortensen (Twitter link) believes that Wentz will be ready for the team’s season opener.

All offseason long, the Eagles have been hoping that Wentz would be ready for Week 1. Of course, after his late-season ACL and LCL tears, the team is taking a cautious approach to his recovery. So far, Wentz has looked sharp in OTAs, so he should be ready to retake his spot as the team’s starting QB in September.

Here’s more from the East divisions:

  • There was a great deal of retirement talk surrounding Patriots tight end Rob Gronkowski this offseason, but that’s all in the rear view mirror now. “I had to see where my body was at and where my mind was at. But now I’m out here, and I feel good,” Gronk said (Twitter link via ESPN.com’s Jeff Darlington). “I feel like I definitely made the right decision coming back out. Mind and body. That’s what it has always been about. Nothing wrong with that, in my opinion. On Tuesday, Gronk and Tom Brady both reported to the Patriots for OTAs.
  • Jets tight end Chris Herndon, who was arrested Saturday, was on the practice field on Tuesday (Twitter link via Brian Costello of the New York Post). It remains to be seen whether he’ll face league discipline or whether the DUI charge will impact his status with the team.
  • The Giants announced that GM Dave Gettleman is set to undergo treatment for lymphoma. “Recently, I underwent an annual physical, during which it was discovered I have lymphoma. Over the past week, I have undergone more testing to determine the course of treatment, which is scheduled to start in the very near future,” Gettleman said in a statement. “The doctor’s outlook for the treatment and the prognosis is positive, and so am I. I will continue to work as much as the treatment process will allow, and as they know, when I am not in the office, I will be in constant communication with Pat (Shurmur), Kevin (Abrams) and the rest of our staff.”

Draft QB Fallout: Darnold, Allen, Mayfield

A draft that produced one of the longest rumor cycles surrounding quarterbacks in recent memory continues to generate fallout. And some of it centers on the quarterback that fell to No. 3.

Among the emotions expressed in the Jets’ war room after the Giants chose Saquon Barkley over Sam Darnold were disbelief and joy, per Manish Mehta of the New York Daily News. But the Giants weren’t the only team many NFL executives and scouts believe helped out the Jets.

The Browns’ Baker Mayfield pick went against the grain, with Matt Miller of Bleacher Report writing that he only confirmed two teams — the Browns and Patriots — that rated the 2017 Heisman Trophy winner as the top quarterback in this draft. Conversely, 15 different teams rated Darnold as their top QB, Miller reports.

Mike Maccagnan decided to keep an airtight lid on his quarterback hierarchy, only informing Christopher Johnson and Todd Bowles of which signal-caller he had as his top-rated passer. The fourth-year Jets GM didn’t bother to assign final grades to the top five QBs in fear of that information seeping out, but grades were given to every other player on the Jets’ board, per Mehta. While the precise order here is not known, Mehta reports Darnold was the Jets’ top-rated passing prospect — one the team did not think would get past the Browns at No. 1 until very late in the process.

The Jets weren’t certain the Giants would pass on Darnold, either, but were aware of Dave Gettleman‘s interest in Barkley. One source informed Miller that Gettleman, indeed, did not pick up the phone regarding trade interest in the No. 2 overall pick. While Gettleman himself confirmed one team made a strong offer for No. 2, it’s unclear when on draft night that proposal emerged. Wowed by none of these QBs, the Giants did not have a consensus on which of these players was the best prospect.

While the Cardinals wound up with Josh Rosen, Miller reports Josh Allen was their top-rated quarterback. The team that actually drafted Allen, the Bills, had the Wyoming talent rated as this class’ No. 2 passer, Miller reports. Buffalo was one of the teams that viewed Darnold as this draft’s top QB.

No reports of Allen visiting the Cardinals emerged until he confirmed just before the draft he took a trip to Arizona. Miller notes the Cards may have tried to trade up for Allen prior to landing Rosen. Additionally, the Twitter controversy did not appear to affect Allen’s stock. Miller adds no sources indicated that played a role in their teams’ respective assessments of Allen.

Extra Points: Jets, Giants, Eagles, Broncos, Chiefs, Vikings

With the selection of Sam Darnold at No. 3 in the 2018 NFL Draft, the Jets brought their quarterback room to five. The USC product joined Josh McCown, Teddy Bridgewater, Bryce Petty and Christian Hackenberg. Newsday’s Calvin Watkins, however, notes that number is expected to shrink by the time the team heads to training camp in July.

The two obvious candidates to be moved or released are Petty and Hackenberg. The former has failed to impress in seven starts, and the latter, despite having a cannon for an arm, has yet to make an appearance in his first two seasons.

Even if one of the two make it to training camp, another move is likely to come as keeping four quarterbacks would handicap the team at other positions. In addition to Darnold, it would be hard to see the veteran McCown not making the squad. The journeyman is viewed as invaluable in the locker room and is the perfect candidate to help the young Darnold learn the ropes of the NFL.

Bridgewater, however, is no lock to make the roster. As Watkins notes, the former Vikings signal-caller receives a $5MM base salary if he makes the team. If not, the Jets are only out the $500,000 signing bonus. If he proves he is back to his pre-injury form, New York will have a steal. If not, the team can cut bait with minimal salary implications.

Here’s more from around the league:

  • The Broncos did not endure a turnover in the scouting department following this weekend’s draft, 9 News’ Mike Klis tweets. In the wake of the annual draft, it is not uncommon for teams to part ways with scouts and personnel department. Team president John Elway, however, decided to bring everyone back.
  • The Chiefs hired Eagles assistant director of college scouting Michael Bradway to an undisclosed position, Geoff Mosher of 97.5 The Fanatic in Philadelphia tweets. Mosher notes Bradway, who was with the Eagles for seven seasons, joins back up with Chiefs general manager Brett Veach, who also spent time in Philadelphia.
  • The Giants attempted to trade into the back end of the second round to select Georgia linebacker Lorenzo Carter, the New York Post’s Paul Schwartz writes. Though a deal did not form, New York was still able to pluck the speedy edge rusher when he fell to their third-round pick (No. 66). “What you have to appreciate is his unseen production. If he is flying off the edge, he is creating pressure. Sometimes you are looking at guys that create plays for others.,” general manager Dave Gettleman said.
  • The Eagles drafted their fewest players since 1989 when it emerged from the draft with only five selections. That is not a spot the team wants to be in again, general manager Howie Roseman told The Philadelphia Inquirer’s Les Bowen. “I think it’s a hard first couple of days for people who put a lot of time and effort into the process, and you see that,” Roseman said. “The last two days, it’s hard. A lot of guys get off the board, so we don’t want to do that again. I think that’s the first takeaway.”
  • Vikings center Pat Elflein is doing “part work” in spring drills but is not going to be ready for OTAs, the player told Chris Tomasson of the St. Paul Pioneer Press (Twitter link). Elflein suffered a fractured left ankle in the NFC Championship game on Jan. 21 and underwent surgery the following week. “We’re just not rushing it. I’m just trying to get myself back in shape and get strong and be ready to go.,” Elflein said.

Latest On Giants At No. 2

With the Browns likely to take a quarterback with the No. 1 overall pick of the upcoming draft, the Giants are generating a lot of discussion, as they could go in any number of directions with their No. 2 overall selection. According to Paul Schwartz of the New York Post, the team is looking increasingly unlikely to take a signal-caller with that pick. 

Though the MMQB’s Albert Breer notes general manager Dave Gettleman likes Sam Darnold and the coaches like Josh Allen, Schwartz cites a national scout who pegs Saquon Barkley as the pick.

“I thought all along this is the guy Dave wants,” the scout said. “And he might get him, if Cleveland is dumb enough not to take him at No. 1.”

The Penn State back is considered by the Giants to be a better player than the Cowboys’ Ezekiel Elliott, who was the No. 4 overall pick in 2016. Schwartz says Barkley’s lack of off-the-field concerns and his ability to contribute in the passing game make him a solid selection at No. 2.

However, Jordan Raanan of ESPN.com says he has been hearing more and more whispers that the Giants could trade the No. 2 selection (Twitter link). The Bills are one team that other writers believe could be the Giants’ trading partner in that scenario, as Buffalo could grab its quarterback of the future and New York could add a significant amount of draft capital while still being in position to select a top-flight player in the first round. Matt Miller of Bleacher Report, meanwhile, hears that all options are on the table for Big Blue’s top pick, including a trade, a QB, Barkley, Bradley Chubb, and even Quenton Nelson (Twitter link).

Schwartz does name Chubb as a potential candidate for the Giants’ No. 2 pick, and Gettleman’s history would lend credence to that theory, as the former Panthers GM took defensive linemen with his first two picks with that franchise.

But Schwartz, unlike Miller, does not believe Nelson will be in play if the Giants keep their pick. Though he is a top-three player on their board, Schwartz hears that Nelson will only be considered in a trade-down scenario.

Rory Parks contributed to this post.

Draft Notes: Broncos, Davenport, Giants

If the Broncos do not see the quarterback they prefer still on the board by the time their No. 5 pick rolls around, Albert Breer of SI.com hears the team is a prime candidate to trade down. Breer mentions Quenton Nelson or Denzel Ward as names connected to the Broncos. If Denver were to move down and target one of these players, however, they could be vulnerable to another team selecting either. The Bears, who hold the eighth pick, have met with both of these prospects. Nelson would slide in as the highest-ceiling O-line prospect the Broncos have had in many years, likely being a Day 1 starter at left guard, while Ward would be thrust into the pipeline behind Chris Harris and Bradley Roby. The Broncos signed Tramaine Brock in March, but the cornerback’s deal is only for one year.

Here’s more from Denver and the latest from the draft world:

  • As for the quarterback the Broncos may be eyeing, Mike Klis of 9News writes Case Keenum‘s honeymoon would be short-lived if Baker Mayfield were still on the board at No. 5. The Broncos brass “loved” Mayfield’s playmaking ability before they proceeded to spend extensive time with him in the pre-draft process. With a dinner and official visit set up for Monday and Tuesday of next week, the Broncos will have met with Mayfield four times this offseason — coaching him at the Senior Bowl, conducing a Combine interview and sending representatives to his pro day.
  • While a report earlier this offseason pegged Josh Rosen as the Broncos’ preferred quarterback prospect, Klis writes that if the UCLA talent is still there at No. 5, that may trigger a trade-down sequence. Rosen being viewed as a player who could start early in his rookie year may not line up with the Broncos’ timeline, with the team guaranteeing Keenum $25MM, per Klis.
  • The other team that’s possibly eyeing a quarterback but isn’t certain to select one with its top-five pick, the Giants may have a bit of a divide about which one they prefer. They’ve been connected to Sam Darnold for weeks, and Breer notes Dave Gettleman is indeed high on the 20-year-old USC product. But he adds Giants coaches have expressed support for Josh Allen. While running back might not be the best investment with a No. 2 overall choice, Breer notes the Giants’ coaching staff and front office contingents are sold on Saquon Barkley. The Penn State standout visited the Giants earlier this week.
  • Marcus Davenport worked out for the 49ers recently, Matt Barrows of the Sacramento Bee reports. San Francisco is doing extensive work researching the defensive end prospects in this draft. While Bradley Chubb is not expected to be on the board by the time the 49ers pick at No. 9, they spent multiple days with Arden Key this week. They also worked out Florida State defensive end Josh Sweat, with Barrows writing the 49ers “would love” to add an outside rusher and are examining several prospects closely at this spot.
  • A source close to John Dorsey informed Breer that it is looking like a Darnold-or-Allen debate for the Browns at No. 1. Said source indicated Dorsey is high on Darnold but also is intrigued by Allen’s upside. And he has a history as an exec of taking potential over production.

Giants To Overhaul Draft Process

The Giants could look very different in a short time after the hiring of new general manager Dave Gettleman. The team is not only expected to announce Pat Shurmur as the team’s new head coach, but it is set to change its entire draft process, the New York Post’s Paul Schwartz writesDave Gettleman (vertical)

Schwartz notes that Gettleman will be “tearing up the Giants’ entire operation when it comes to the draft — from how players are graded, how scouts will be assigned and how the actual draft board is assembled.”

The idea of the moves, which were not divulged in the piece, is to eliminate the misses in the middle rounds that the team has endured in recent years. That is one area where Gettleman has had success in his four years with the Panthers. From 2013-16, Gettleman oversaw the drafting of Kawann Short (second round), James Bradberry (second), Trai Turner (third round) and Daryl Williams (fourth), all of whom have cemented starting spots in Carolina.

In addition to revamping the team’s draft-board process, Gettleman is also expected to change the way the team’s scouts scour the country in search of talent. The Giants do not have regional or national scouts like most teams. They are instead assigned an area, and former GM Jerry Reese served as an “extra set of eyes” on the team’s A-rated prospects.

From the sound of things, it appears Gettleman is focused firmly on how the team evaluates talent and acquires it through the draft. That’s a good place to start with a team that owns the No. 2 pick in the upcoming draft.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.

Latest On Giants’ Coaching Search

Once thought to be the Giants’ No. 1 candidate, Jim Schwartz looks like he will be a bit behind in Big Blue’s search.

The Eagles’ DC received an interview request, but the sides have yet to schedule said summit, Ian Rapoport of NFL.com reports (on Twitter). If nothing transpires by Sunday, the Giants will have to wait until the Eagles are eliminated to meet with Schwartz. Jordan Raanan of ESPN.com notes (on Twitter) the Giants don’t have a Sunday interview scheduled; he labels Schwartz as being on the back-burner.

While waiting hasn’t been a deal-breaker for some teams in the past, the Giants and Schwartz — attached in rumors for weeks — not conducting an interview before he prepares for Philadelphia’s divisional-round game could cause the team to pivot away from the former Lions boss. The Eagles are not a highly regarded No. 1 seed presently, but in a hotly contested coaching market that’s seen three Giants interviewees also take meetings elsewhere, the team could opt to move forward with other candidates to stave off competitors. Schwartz has met with the Cardinals about their HC vacancy.

Big Blue has already met with Steve Spagnuolo, Josh McDaniels, Matt Patricia and Pat Shurmur, whom Raanan notes (on Twitter) interviewed Saturday. The Giants still plan to meet with both Eric Studesville and Steve Wilks early next week, Ralph Vacchiano of SNY.tv tweets. The Carolina DC would be eligible to meet with New York’s representatives after the Panthers-Saints game, whether his team wins or loses.

Dave Gettleman, John Mara and assistant GM Kevin Abrams are meeting with the HC candidates, per Vacchiano (on Twitter), who adds co-owner Steve Tisch will meet with candidates as the team moves closer to a final decision.

Giants To Interview Eric Studesville

On Monday, the Broncos let go of running backs coach Eric Studesville but it didn’t take long for teams to come calling. The Giants plan to interview the longtime assistant coach for their head-coaching position, NBC 9 in Denver’s Mike Klis reports (Twitter link). Eric Studesville (vertical)

Klis also notes the Giants put in a request with Denver to interview Studesville before he was let go. He is obviously free to interview with the team now without Denver’s approval.

USA Today’s Lindsay Jones points out (Twitter link) that Studesville served as the Giants running backs coach from 2001-03. While there he overlapped with new general manager Dave Gettleman, who served as pro personnel director.

In 2016, Studesville turned down an interview with the Jets for the offensive coordinator position. The coach has been with the Broncos since 2010 and even served as interim head coach following the firing of Josh McDaniels in 2010. The firing of Studesville did not sit well with C.J. Anderson, who tweeted out his displeasure following the dismissal.

Held in high regard around the league by players and front-office members, Studesville is sure to land on his feet quickly.

Photo courtesy of USA Today Sports Images.