Giants Success Makes Spagnuolo Hot Stuff

A year ago, after having much to do with the Giants' unlikely victory over the then-undefeated Patriots in the Super Bowl, defensive coordinator Steve Spagnuolo interviewed for the Redskins head coaching gig. Ultimately, he decided to stay in New York, presumably because he liked his job, and the Giants chances for a successful run in '08.

So far, so good. But after this season, Spags will almost certainly receive some head-coaching offers, and, just like last year, it's not clear what he'll do. In the meantime, he's saying what he said 12 months ago: not much.

"I'll give it the thought or address it when it happens ... I have too much respect for coach Coughlin, John Mara and the Tisch family to really even worry about it right now."

When the Giants hired Spagnuolo away from the Eagles to replace the ineffective Tim Lewis, not many people thought much of it. He's blossomed from a good linebackers coach to one of the league's best coordinators. And he'll almost certainly have the opportunity to parlay that into coaching job. The only question is where.

Newsday's Tom Rock lists Cleveland, Buffalo and Cincinnati as potential landing spots, but points out that the Giants, while they can't make Spagnuolo Tom Coughlin's unofficial successor (like Cowboys owner Jerry Jones has done with Jason Garrett and Wade Phillips), they can offer him something most franchises can't: the chance to play for a winner. Via Rock:

"The Giants already have one Super Bowl title and are working on a second. The teams that will have coaching vacancies in the coming days likely won't be close to championship-ready. Ultimately, the Giants' best bargaining chip in keeping Spagnuolo might be the state of the franchise itself."

Assuming other, more successful teams aren't in the market for a head coach this offseason, Spags might just stay put. Sometimes I think Romeo Crennel wishes he'd done that.

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