Joe Judge's top job at the Senior Bowl this week will be scouting the players who could be part of the Giants' future. But he also still has some work to do in assembling his coaching staff.
Judge is expected to hold several job interviews down in Mobile, Ala., this week as he attempts to fill the final holes on his first staff with the Giants. He has several jobs still to figure out, most seemingly on the defensive side. He also has to choose a coach for the offensive line.
So far, the Giants have only announced Judge's coordinators -- Jason Garrett (offensive), Patrick Graham (defensive) and Thomas McGaughey (special teams). According to multiple sources, Judge has also hired Jerry Schuplinski as quarterbacks coach, Burton Burns as running backs coach and is retaining Tyke Tolbert as receivers coach. McGaughey indicated that Tom Quinn will return as assistant special teams coach, too.
Also, according to ESPN's Field Yates, former Falcons defensive passing game coordinator Jerome Henderson has been hired as the team's defensive backs coach. It was possible that the Giants' other assistant special teams coach Anthony Blevins, who is reportedly being retained, could be moving to the secondary. However, that doesn't appear to be the case now.
The most recent hire, though, is Bret Bielema joining Judge's staff, per NFL Network's Ian Rapoport. According to a SNY source, Bielema is expected to be the Giants linebackers coach.
That leaves coaches for the tight ends, offensive line, and defensive line left. It's possible some of those job have been filled already, but the names haven't leaked out yet. It's also possible some of those deals are not finalized.
The most critical hire of what's left, of course, will be the offensive line coach. The Giants were not thrilled with how Hal Hunter handled the offensive line the last two seasons, and they believe they have better pieces in place along the line than they showed as a group on the field. Dave DeGuglielmo, a former Giants assistant, was scheduled to interview for the job on Tuesday, and Marc Columbo, the former Cowboys offensive line coach, is scheduled to interview on Wednesday.
Both have ties that make them intriguing candidates. DeGuglielmo was the Giants assistant offensive line coach from 2004-08 under Tom Coughlin, and as the Patriots offensive line coach in 2014-15 when Judge was on that staff. Columbo spent the last four years coaching the Cowboys' offensive line on Garrett's staff in Dallas.
It's not yet clear where Judge will turn for his other staff openings. There was a lot of speculation over the weekend that Cowboys tight end Jason Witten could end up as the Giants' tight ends coach, following a report that the 38-year-old could be interested in following Garrett to New York. At the moment, that appears to be not much more than speculation.
Meanwhile, two familiar names have come up in the buzz about the Giants' other defensive openings -- former linebackers Pepper Johnson and Antonio Pierce. Johnson, a former Patriots linebackers and defensive line coach, is currently the defensive coordinator of the XFL's Los Angeles Wildcats, and one source said he appears content to stay in that job this year.
As for Pierce, who is entering his third year as the Arizona State linebackers coach, he does have an interest in coaching in the NFL, a source said. It's just not clear if he's a candidate with the Giants.