EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. -- After a 3-13 season that saw the New York Giants' locker room erode into a cesspool of infighting, dejected attitudes and uncertainties, the team is turning to Pat Shurmur to help clean out the toxins and restore a sense of pride and direction in the locker room.
"I really believe the head coach job for the New York Football Giants is a job for an adult, and Pat is every bit of that," new general manager Dave Gettleman told reporters at the Senior Bowl this week. "I'm just real excited. We've had some great conversations, and he's got a great sense of humor and I'm just excited about where we're going."
Shurmur's maturity, professionalism, quiet confidence and directions were just several of the characteristics that helped win over the endorsement of Gettleman as well as the confidence of team co-owners John Mara and Steve Tisch during the team's interview process that spanned six candidates and a little over two weeks.
"It's such a tough job, especially coming off a season that we came off of with all the issues in the locker room and everything else," Mara said. "You need someone who is a quote adult unquote. Someone who is a professional and has a certain demeanor to walk in there and start to straighten things out. I think he has all those qualities, but time will tell."
"Pat is very adult and he is very mature and he has the experience," said Tisch. "Personally, I appreciate the confidence and the passion and the commitment to the team, to the players he is going to be working with, to the coaches he's going to bring in and the coaches he uses in the building.
"I think the fans, who are tough in this market, are going to really respond to Pat's focus and passion to turn this team around, and I think the proof is going to be in the pudding, and I'm very, very confident that we got the right guy and I'm very, very happy and optimistic."
Shurmur said one of his first priorities will be to meet with the players -- the Giants are eligible to begin their offseason program April 2 -- to lay down the expectations and then help the players to succeed in fulfilling them.
"We used to have to say in Philadelphia and Minnesota that it's not the plays, it's the players," Shurmur said. "I think what's important is we're going to establish the right way to do things. We're going to establish what we want as the New York Giants football team and we're going to inspire the players to see it our way.
"There are reasons why the Giants slipped to 3-13. We're going to find out if some of those reasons were behind the scenes and get them fixed. When it comes to coaching and playing, you work together. I think it's important to establish at the very beginning the way we're going to do things and keep talking about why it's important so they believe it as well."