EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. — New York Giants coach Ben McAdoo held a “long, hard, honest meeting” on Wednesday with his players in their first day back to work this week. In it he put some plays on the screen from Sunday’s 31-21 loss to the San Francisco 49ers where there was an inconsistent desire to finish.
It was a different meeting than the Giants are used to when they arrive to work on Wednesday morning. This one was more to the point and critical.
“Message to them in the meeting was we had some open conversations, some hard talks, some plain talks, some simple talk, played some film and were brutally honest with each other,” McAdoo said. “We’ll see how the players respond. They had a nice day of practice [Wednesday]. We also talked about the great opportunity in front of us.”
The Giants (1-8) have seven games remaining, beginning with a difficult matchup Sunday with the Kansas City Chiefs. The Giants are 10.5-point underdogs at home.
They’re hoping the meeting correlates to a better product. They’ve conceded what was put on the field the past few weeks was embarrassing.
Still, it took until Week 11 for this kind of meeting to happen. It may have been too late with this season long dead.
The Giants are in last place in the NFC East and have allowed 82 points in the past two games combined.
“Yeah, definitely,” cornerback Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie said about the meeting possibly occurring too late.
He later added: “I think it would’ve put guys at a different attention on alert back then, because nobody wants to be called out. I don’t care what you say. Nobody wants to have that play up there where you have to come back in the locker room and everybody is looking at you like you’re that guy.
“I think it could’ve helped if it were done earlier or not, but at least it got done.”
It occurred after the Giants were blown out by the previously winless 49ers. Cornerback Janoris Jenkins appeared to be the biggest offender with his effort on several tackles.
But he was not alone. McAdoo explained in his Monday conference call that he didn’t see a consistent desire to finish throughout the game. He provided that same explanation when asked specifically about Jenkins, who was unavailable for comment on Wednesday when the Giants began preparations for the Kansas City Chiefs.
McAdoo said there is a “possibility there were be some changes” this week as a result. He did not provide any specifics.
It was clear that the players’ efforts were a point of contention at Wednesday’s meeting.
“At some points [efforts were questioned],” linebacker Devon Kennard said. “Just guys could have given more effort.”
The players saw it on tape. They didn’t reject the notion that it was insufficient. “The only thing I can say is disappointing is the lack of want-to after all we’ve been through,” Rodgers-Cromartie said. “I’ll take a lost play flying around. But how we’re losing …”
The Giants have lost each of their past three games by double-digits. They’ve allowed 14 plays of over 20 yards in the past two weeks.
The meeting was McAdoo’s last-ditch effort to get his team back on the same page after a pair of recent suspension and blowout losses have their season seemingly off the rails.
“It was just an opportunity for everybody to see what was going on, from both sides of the ball,” Kennard said. “We got to see some of the offensive plays and hear Coach McAdoo coach some guys up on the offensive side and the defensive side and I think it’s just a good way for everybody to be held accountable for what’s going on, on and off the field.”