Pat Shurmur was unable to land his top choice - and possibly choices - for offensive coordinator. Instead, he has turned to one of Dave Gettleman's guys.
Shurmur has hired former Carolina Panthers offensive coordinator Mike Shula as his offensive coordinator, SNY confirmed. The 52-year-old Shula will also serve as the Giants quarterbacks coach, a source told SNY.
Shula, son of legendary Dolphins coach and Hall of Famer Don Shula, had spent the last seven seasons in Carolina, first as the quarterbacks coach (2011-12), and then as the offensive coordinator (2013-17). Gettleman served as GM of the Panthers from 2013-17, so he saw Shula's work up close - particularly in 2015 when the Panthers went 15-1 and made the Super Bowl, riding the top-scoring offense in the league.
Shula, though, was not Shurmur's top target for either job. His hope was to hire his former quarterbacks coach in Minnesota, Kevin Stefanski, according to a team source. But the Vikings denied permission for the Giants to interview Stefanski, even after they passed him over for their vacant offensive coordinator job.
After that, Shurmur was believed to be eyeing Eagles running backs coach Duce Staley. It's not known if the Giants formally requested permission to interview Staley, but multiple league sources were certain the Eagles wouldn't grant it. Their staff is already disintegrating after their Super Bowl championship, with quarterbacks coach John DeFilippo taking the offensive coordinator job in Minnesota, and offensive coordinator Frank Reich being hired as the head coach of the Indianapolis Colts.
Shurmur did reportedly talk with former Seahawks offensive coordinator Darrell Bevell about the job. He was free to sign with anyone, but apparently the Giants preferred Shula instead.
Shula was fired by the Panthers back in January after Carolina's offense sputtered the last two seasons - being ranked 19th in the NFL both times. The Panthers did have the NFL's fourth-best rushing attack last season (131.4 yards per game), but their passing offense -- led by QB Cam Newton (whose numbers dipped dramatically) -- was ranked near the bottom of the league.
During that slip, Shula's offense came under some familiar criticism, with fans and media lamenting how stale and predictable it had become. Still, Panthers head coach Ron Rivera publicly supported Shula, and in early January, even said publicly he wasn't expecting any staff changes.
One day later, he fired Shula and Panthers quarterbacks coach Ken Dorsey. Rivera eventually hired Norv Turner to be his offensive coordinator instead.
With the Giants, Shula will not be calling plays - Shurmur has said he prefers to that himself - but he'll be running the offense during the week, and helping to put together game plans. He will also be charged with developing the eventual replacement for 37-year-old quarterback Eli Manning, whether that's Davis Webb, or a quarterback the Giants take with the No. 2 overall pick in the draft.
The Giants are expected to announce the hiring of Shula later on Tuesday. So far, they haven't announced any members of Shurmur's staff except for defensive coordinator James Bettcher. All the other positions, though, have already been filled.
Shula has spent most of his 30 years as a coach as an assistant in the NFL, but from 2003-06 he was the head coach at Alabama, going 26-23 overall (though 16 of those wins were vacated by the NCAA over a free-textbook scandal involving some Crimson Tide football players). He was also the quarterback for the Crimson Tide from 1984-86 and a 12th-round draft pick of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in 1987.