As Joe Judge puts the finishing touches on building his first coaching staff as head coach of the New York Giants, he'll likely also rely on some veterans to help lead by example.
One of those veterans is tackle Nate Solder, who spent six seasons with Judge in New England.
Solder knows Judge as well as anyone on the current Giants' roster, and he is a big fan of Big Blue's new head coach.
"I think it's a fantastic hire," Solder told the Giants' official team website on Friday. "I think he brings a lot of the qualities that we need, so I'm really looking forward to that. I think his commitment to details, his discipline, his history of winning a lot of championships (five, including two at Alabama and three with the Patriots), I think those are all fantastic attributes.
"He's a young guy (38), but he's also a charismatic guy. He was in front of the whole team a lot as the special teams coach. I always kind of thought he was socially a ringleader of the other assistant coaches. I think it makes a lot of sense (that he's a head coach)."
In fact, Solder recalled one story in particular that he believes best sums up Judge as a coach.
"We had a really cold practice," Solder said. "The temperature read seven, but I think it was like negative 15 feeling out there. We all gave Joe a hard time. We were like, 'Hey Joe, we'll give you one thousand bucks if you go out there in the cold (wearing summer clothes). He stood out there with no jacket and shorts on for a two-hour practice.
"So, talk about toughness, the guy has toughness."
Solder signed a five-year, $62 million deal ($35 million guaranteed) with the Giants in 2018, making him the highest-paid offensive in the league at the time.
But in two years as a Giant, Solder has under-performed. While he's stayed healthy and has started 16 games in each of the last two years, and he knows that he and the rest of the team have plenty to work on entering 2020.
"We have a lot of work ahead of ourselves," Solder said. "Just fixing one part, being the head coach doesn't fix everything. Each one of us has to take on the responsibility on our own shoulders to be better next year, to do the things it takes, to work better as a team, and we're thankful that we have a great leader with Joe Judge. We're thankful that we have Jason Garrett and all the coaches that they're hiring. But it's going to be a difficult road ahead of us, as it is for every team at the beginning of the season. We're not looking too far ahead, and we're not looking back."