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20 years ago tomorrow, Phil Simms released from the Giants

ChathamMark : 6/14/2014 9:43 pm
Good read.
Link - ( New Window )
I've always wondered  
djm : 6/14/2014 10:29 pm : link
Who was the catalyst behind the release? Was it young or reeves? Were they both on the same page? Have to believe it was young but you wonder if reeves had put up a fight would young have cooled his jets and held on to Simms for one more year...I tend to think reeves could have saved Simms for one more year but that's just a guess.

We know Mara didn't want to release Simms. I still hold a little anger towards the giants for releasing Simms right in the middle of the ny rangers Stanley cup celebration. That and the Bavaro release...
I always thought that it was because of Dave Brown  
Jim in Tampa : 6/14/2014 10:48 pm : link
I may be wrong but I think the Giants needed to start him to see what they had before his rookie contract was up. Plus Phil didn't have much left (as he admitted later when he turned down an offer from the Browns).
Doomster : 6/14/2014 10:49 pm : link
Phil was coming back from shoulder surgery...he would have been 39 years old.....he said his shoulder was ok.....

Hard to believe, they picked those two guys over the time, I thought it was because of Phil's see those guys put up 15 td's/18 int's, one could only wonder what might have happened if Phil was out there one more year....they made a huge mistake, giving up a #1 for Dave Brown, and compounded it in '94........
Derek Brown was our draft pick in 1992  
Canton : 6/14/2014 11:09 pm : link
Dave Brown was our 1st pick in the Supplemental Round.
Holy s%$*  
HumbleGiant : 6/14/2014 11:45 pm : link
Im Old lol!!
True, we had to give up the first rounder in order to get Brown  
Scott in Seattle : 6/15/2014 12:00 am : link
... but unless my memory has started to fail me, the 2nd rounder ended up being Michael Strahan.
I don't  
Eric from BBI : Admin : 6/15/2014 12:07 am : link
know if it's the correct interpretation or not, but at the time, I always felt that Reeves wanted to keep Simms but Young invested that #1 supplemental pick in Brown and felt it was time to move on and play him.
Eric from BBI : Admin : 6/15/2014 12:09 am : link
sure why he wants to decline to name them, I think it was pretty well known at the time that the Redskins were one of the teams.
Eric from BBI : Admin : 6/15/2014 12:12 am : link
he did mention the Browns.
I kinda remember...  
BillKo : 6/15/2014 6:22 am : link
the AZ Cards and Buddy Ryan making an offer/having interest. And Simms saying something afterwards had he been healthy, he would have been there.
As I recall  
Matt in SGS : 6/15/2014 7:53 am : link
Reeves did not want to release Simms, he wanted to try one more run. However, Young felt it was time to see what his 2 young QBs could do.

The combination of investing a first rounder in Dave Brown, plus Simms coming off a shoulder injury played a big factor. And last was the salary cap. If you remember, in 1993, there was an uncapped year and the Giants threw a lot of money around (Michael Brooks, Carlton Bailey, Mark Jackson, Mike Sherrard). By 1994, the Giants had tons of cap trouble. So much so that they lost their entire defensive backfield to free agency (Mark Collins, Greg Jackson, Myron Guyton, and Perry Williams).

In George Young's eyes, it was time to pull the trigger. What always rubbed me the wrong way was the Giants looked like they tried to sneak the news in and bury it during the Rangers parade.

And I also do remember the Arizona Cardinals being a possible landing spot for Simms, but his shoulder wasn't ready. That Cardinal team actually had a bunch of old QBs on the roster anyway (Beuerlein, Jay Schroeder, and Jim McMahon), so Simms made sense for what Buddy Ryan wanted to do.
It was the right thing to do.  
Big Blue '56 : 6/15/2014 8:28 am : link
Phil's shoulder was effectively shot. He even decided not to try out for Belichick in Cleveland..

HOW it was handled was disgraceful. Not a bright moment for Young
Poor ending for Simms but the bigger issue was  
Jimmy Googs : 6/15/2014 8:29 am : link
what they ever saw in Dave Brown.
RE: Poor ending for Simms but the bigger issue was  
Matt in SGS : 6/15/2014 8:51 am : link
In comment 11728582 Jimmy Googs said:
what they ever saw in Dave Brown.

I always wondered if the NFL's unfamiliarity with the Spurrier system hurt Dave Brown. Remember, Spurrier started at Duke as a head coach (he was a head coach in the USFL as well before, with Tampa). Duke was putting up good offensive numbers against better ACC teams, and Brown began with Spurrier as his coach and ran his system even after he left.

So you looked at Brown, and he had the size and smarts. And was a local kid. Plus add in the production against more traditional powers, and the Giants felt they had to make the move with Simms and Hoss getting older. It wasn't until later in the Spurrier years at Florida, and all the NFL flops at QB that came out of his system despite the big numbers that teams started to devalue QBs who came out of Florida. The Giants and their scouts didn't have that experience to fall back on, and they got burned.

To be fair, Brown never had much to work with. He had Hampton who was being run into the ground by Reeves. But his WRs to work with at any given time was Chris Calloway, an oft injured Mike Sherrard, Lawrence Dawsey, Kevin Alexander. You get the idea. His most explosive player might have been Charles Way, a 250 pound fullback. Their offense was horrible all around.
Happy Daddy's day Matt..  
Big Blue '56 : 6/15/2014 9:04 am : link
I hear you about Brown..I really wanted him to succeed..What Giants' fan didn't? He was one of the gutsiest QBs I ever saw..Since I didn't(don't) watch college football, I cannot comment on what Young, Boisture, et al saw in the guy to give up a #1 by taking him in the supplemental draft..

He never grasped the pro game, imv..He could have used more help to be certain, but he seemed to sink in the abyss of happy feet and his throwing motion was Kosar-esque(without BK's results)...I just never felt he was any good..Perhaps he was too damaged to benefit from Fassel's skill with QBs, but I felt Graham was easily the better QB even with HIS flaws..
Thanks BB and to you too  
Matt in SGS : 6/15/2014 9:17 am : link
As for Brown's happy feet, there is no question. I am finishing up a game review right now that features Brown and several times in the game, you just see how uncomfortable he was, even without pressure coming at him. I think that the beatings in 1995 pretty much damaged him beyond repair.
Brown played under Spurrier for only a short  
Jimmy Googs : 6/15/2014 9:19 am : link
period of his college career (i think). He had a few good games against ACC competition, but he really didn't have a strong enough college career for a snap judgments to be picked in the Supp Draft.

Giants were panicking at QB...
I had just become a rabid Giants fan  
mrvax : 6/15/2014 9:30 am : link
in 1993. I remember being pissed that Simms and LT were both "retired".
Know it all that I am, I decided to actually read the article,  
Great White Ghost : 6/15/2014 10:02 am : link
and do some other reading before posting, as I thought I was perfectly sure of what happened and have had very definite opinions on it for the last 20 years.But I wanted to make sure.I find I have to reconsider my long held views on the matter.

I had considered Reeves a vengeful scumbag who came to NY to gut the roster that crushed him in the superbowl. Always hated him, tried to like him as a coach, then he fired Simms, who he had begged the year before to get behind him as a new coach, did the same with taylor, Simms goes pro bowl and then gets shitcanned.Never forgave him.Then all that bullshit with that other retard quarteback he had the hots for, that schmuck kid, damn, can't remember his name.
Some backup he had out west he had the hots for that never worked out.Shit, what was that guys name??

Anyway, It seems that it was more Young than Reeves, that's apparently how history records it, but I don't remember his shoulder being shot, or him really being at the end of his ability to play effectively. I thought, in fact, that he had 2 years with Fassel, as a QB coach who really cleaned up his game and some of his mechanics right before they hired Reeves. I remember him saying he wished he had him as a QB coach earlier in his career.proof that an old vet QB can use a QB coach, and learn new tricks.

So, I'm glad I looked before I leaped here, except I still don't like Reeves, I thought Simms was the best player in franchise hsitory outside of taylor, (before Mannign established himself) and my screename itself is in reference and remeberance to the bitterness he still carried in the years Immediately following his release( regardless of the fact a certain segment of the posting community thinks it's some sort of racial statement).

He always said they'd have to cut him out of Giants Blue kicking and screaming, he'd never go of his own will, and that's what happened, and while I'm glad he is over it now, it pained him a great deal for quite some time.

In his first game back as an announcer at Giants stadium after he started his broadcast career, he was interviewed briefly before the game by some local media and was asked how he felt coming back. He said he felt that NY had already forgotten him, and refffered to himself as
"the Great White Ghost", clearly still bitter and pained over the way things ended.The pain for the day didn't end there though, as the scaffolding erected for the broadcast both he was situated in collapsed on and hit him in the head.he came back to NY and was still betting bunps and bruises, I thought it Ironic and never forgot that, or what a great leader he was, or what an example of a human being, and a good soldier he was. Eli is tough, so was Favre, But there was a time when Simms was the most sacked QB in the NFL, a time when sportswriters voted him as having more heart than anyone else in the NFL.I remember reading how he would play with broken ribs, a broken thumb, and said nothing about it.I remember it came out aftet the season, they asked Parcelss about it, and he snarled, "That's what he's SUPPOSED to do!".His wife used to have to help him get his clothes off when he got home after games, he was so beat to shit. She would cry when she saw all the cuts and bruises on his body, and how banged up he was. He never said a thing.I picked this screename to honor that man, and that way he played, and represented NY, all heart and character, the quintissential Giant, The Kind of guy you could show to your children as to what an example of what a man is supposed to be.i

I love Eli Manning and I think we are so so lucky to have gottent 2 QBs like that on my team in my lifetime ( most other fans never do, but there are exceptions like the 49ers( Montano then Young and Garcia, all great) and The Cowboys had the privelege of Staubach then Aikman, all great guys, bteer athletes, but I really think you have to look far and wide to find 2 tougher guys, 2 men with more character than Simms and Manning.

Manning was somewhat sheparded through his early career.Simms had to fight for all he got, and so in a way I think he is even tougher, and he put up with an awful lot of shit back in the day.Maybe Manning is tougher, I dunno, but All these years later, I still wish I could have seen one more year out of Phil Simms, the Great White Ghost.
Tommy Maddox  
Great White Ghost : 6/15/2014 10:17 am : link
That was that schmucks name.The guy that Reese tried desperately to replace Brown with the very next year after Simms was released.I never thought Reese was committed to Brown to begin with, and put Maddox in a few times to replace Brown,but he was an unmitigated train wreck, finally getting cut in the 96 preseason, around the same time the Kanell Graham Brown QB merry go round by rotation started. It always seemed to me that it was maddox who Reeves really wanted all along though.Had him as a backup in Denver or wherever it was out west before he came here. Guy sucked and annoyed the shit out of me.
Big Blue '56 : 6/15/2014 10:17 am : link
To many of us, Young was the guy not Reeves..Simms had a great year for Reeves in '93 with our 11-5 finish..

I never thought it was Reeves in the main
Yes, I get that, now  
Great White Ghost : 6/15/2014 10:27 am : link
That's why I said in my opening That I find I have to rethink my stance. My point was no, I don't know everything.Even if I pretend I do.Happy Fathers day, that's the only present you guys are getting from me, heheh.

I still don't like Reeves, though.
Big Blue '56 : 6/15/2014 10:29 am : link
I remember...  
jnoble : 6/15/2014 12:42 pm : link
..getting the paper and seeing the headline "SIMMS CUT" and yelling outloud "What??". That was pre-internet era when the only info I had was whatever the sports section in the Star Ledger had.

I can understand why the Giants wanted to try out Dave Brown. Like someone else above just said, he had NFL size, a good arm, local kid, 1st Rd investment blah blah blah but he never had a good cast around him to work with.
Steve Spurrier is quoted as saying Brown was one of the most talented QBs he ever coached in college. I always found that interesting.
here's an interview with Brown from a couple years ago  
jnoble : 6/15/2014 12:46 pm : link

The only thing that makes me think Reeves was on board  
oipolloi : 6/15/2014 1:49 pm : link
were his subsequent comments about Brown. After he left the Giants, Reeves said in an interview that he was still perplexed by Brown because he never saw a young QB who he thought was more ready to start.

So, I think that it really was a group decision. And I don't buy the BS about Mara's being against it. Mara had his fingers in every pie. This nostalgic image of him as the grand old man who sat on the sidelines is a complete rewriting of history.
Reeves had his strengths as a coach  
djm : 6/15/2014 2:28 pm : link
But QB development/nurturing wasn't one of those strengths.

You couldn't have immersed brown into a shittier situation than that NYG offense of the mid 90s. The offensive coaching and player personnel areas of the team were just dreadful. Brown may have done ok for himself in a different offense with more talent. But one thing is for sure brown certainly didn't help the giants offense.
Brown was the Gerry Cooney of QB's.........  
Dry Lightning : 6/15/2014 4:11 pm : link
Everyone wanted him to be good so badly that we made a zillion excuses for him. He was completely consistent and never wavered- he stunk from the very first and NEVER proved he could do it. It's funny, those first few games with Eli were so awful, but I always believed. And you could see flashes were HE COULD do it. With a player like that you have to see something to give you hope......Brown just did not have an NFL arm. Terrible scouting job fooled by a Steve Spurrier offense which does not translate to the NFL for a QB.
My darkest day as a Giant fan.  
Big Blue Blogger : 6/15/2014 7:56 pm : link
I was ready to join the Dawg Pound. That's how pissed I was.
Eric from BBI : Admin : 6/15/2014 8:01 pm : link
Yup...remember Reeves saying to the press, "He ain't no Troy Aikman."

Well, no shit, but you don't throw your QB under the bus like that.
jnoble : 6/15/2014 10:22 pm : link
to be fair Dave had some good games. Most were in '94 but he played well in a couple under Fassel too in '97. The opener against Philly and a couple weeks later against the Testaverde Ravens come to mind even though we somehow lost that game last second. I was furious. It was the first of the Fassel meltdowns yet to come
Tommy Maddox......Tommy Maddox  
I Love Clams Casino : 6/16/2014 8:38 am : link
Great post GWG  
ktinsc : 6/16/2014 9:40 am : link
My sentiments exactly. I was furious with reeves when Simms was released.
upnyg : 6/16/2014 10:32 pm : link
In comment 11728633 Great White Ghost said:
All these years later, I still wish I could have seen one more year out of Phil Simms, the Great White Ghost.

Simms was my favorite Giant as a teen. There wasn't much to be excited about in the 70's, but when Simms showed up (and Parcells) you could see the optimism.

He was and is a class act from what I have seen. Rarely, did you hear much during the Hostetler swap and even after he was released. It was disappointing. His last year was a very good year. I thought he had another 2-3 years in him. Also, thought the Giants could have used him as a coach. He's good at what he does, but wondered whether he would have been a successful NFL coach.

I like Manning too. It's good to be a Giant fan.
1994 was such a strange feeling season  
Greg from LI : 6/17/2014 8:35 am : link
The first season I'd ever cheered on a Giants team without Simms or Taylor. It felt like the Twilight Zone.
Big Blue '56 : 6/17/2014 8:48 am : link
can you believe that LT has not played for 20 years? Somehow I can accept Simms gone(and I loved him), but having the best D player ever on your team(arguably the best ever, period) was surreal for me..
I wanted Brown to succeed so badly lol.  
Curtis in VA : 6/17/2014 8:51 am : link
To this day he's one of my favorite players. I don't know why. Maybe it's a nostalgia thing. I didn't really become a huge fan until after the '90 Super Bowl win. I was already 12 years old and although I loved Simms and Hostetler, Dave Brown was the guy I got to root for as a rookie to grow into a good player. He was "the guy" as I became more and more obsessed with my team. I used to make scrap books of every Giants season from newspaper clippings I'd get from the school library. I would spend my entire lunch period reading Giants articles and then taking them home.

Looking back, the 90's were not a great time to become a Giants fan. The offenses were so horrible. Brown, Kanell, Graham... holy crap. Its sad when you're crowning achievement as an NFL QB is putting a hit on a Hall of Fame cornerback, but I'll always be a big fan of Dave Brown anyway lol.
Some bad years during the 90s for Giants  
Jimmy Googs : 6/17/2014 9:04 am : link
only made worse by the rise of the Cowboys, and the media love affair with that team, and where would Deion Sanders play each season...
I know  
Greg from LI : 6/17/2014 10:06 am : link
LT just WAS. He was the Giants personified in human form. When I was a kid I just took it for granted that the best football player in the world was a Giant. It was the natural order of things.
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