Giants’ Judge won’t ‘hide’ from critics amid slump

EAST RUTHERFORD, N.J. — New York Giants coach Joe Judge isn’t backing down from the rambling 11-minute answer he provided after Sunday’s 29-3 loss to the Chicago Bears, explaining why fans should still have faith. Instead, he’s doubling down.

Judge viewed it as a “dose of truth,” whether people want to believe it or not.

Any regrets?

“No,” Judge said confidently Monday on a conference call with reporters. “Look, I was asked a specific question about what fans were asking and I responded to it. People ask me a direct question, I give direct answers. Whoever is listening is going to get a dose of the truth. I was honestly answering to the fans. That was what the question was asked for. Obviously the response can apply to a number a lot of different areas.”

Such as examples of the culture he believes that has been built, a locker room that has been fumigated, and a group of players still bought in and working hard despite being out of the playoff picture. There were also claims of former players calling to tell Judge they missed the Giants, and current impending free agents making their pleas to return.

Judge declined to specify names when pressed Monday. He reiterated the Giants were a desirable destination.

“I know this is a place that players want to play,” he said. “It’s a place that a lot of players are going to want to play for a long time.”

In Judge’s estimation, the Giants (4-12) are a well-coached team. He was asked point-blank the day after a fifth consecutive loss if he still thought so.

After taking a few seconds to digest the question, he responded confidently.

“I would. I would,” he said. “There are obviously some things we have to do better. I’m not going to sit here and hide behind anything. I’m not going to sit here and say we’re perfect or anything. There are a lot of things … I’ve seen a lot of improvement from our players in a lot of different ways. And sometimes not all that is magnified. But I look at different things that show up with our team. … So, look, I’m very confident with the way we’re pushing forward. There are things we have to improve on.

“Obviously, the most important thing in this league is winning. So we have to do a better job putting ourselves in a position to finalize and put ourselves in position to win.”

Judge’s postgame rant attracted plenty of criticism and skepticism in the 24 hours after the loss. It was a talking point on radio and television shows all over the country.

The two players made available on the Giants’ Zoom call Monday, running back Devontae Booker and left tackle Andrew Thomas, both said they did not hear Judge’s controversial answer. Booker did admit that some guys were talking about it on Monday in the locker room.

One Giants player did tell ESPN that there is a faction of players who appreciate that Judge hasn’t quit on them. They, in turn, won’t quit on him.

That is good because Judge and the Giants will finish the season Sunday against the Washington Football Team at a likely angry MetLife Stadium, and they’ll be without quarterback Mike Glennon. He will join starter Daniel Jones on the injured list.

Judge said that Glennon will undergo surgery on his left wrist.

That leaves Jake Fromm likely to start his second career game. The first didn’t go so well two weeks ago against the Philadelphia Eagles, when he threw for 25 yards.

It was still better than this Sunday when the Giants finished with minus-10 net passing yards in Chicago. It was the lowest total in an NFL game since the Chargers and Ryan Leaf did it in 1998.

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