The New York Giants are one of the most renowned and seasoned teams in the NFL. They’ve had a long track record of success since their inception in 1925, winning eight championships, four Super Bowls, and more than 20 division crowns. Football legends like Lawrence Taylor, Michael Strahan, and Eli Manning have all called these cities home. Learn more about their history in this article.
The New York Giants’ history and heritage are intertwined with professional football because, in the early years of the National Football League, one may have died without the other. In 1925, Tim Mara, who is now a member of the Pro Football Hall of Fame, paid $500 for a franchise. Before the Giants’ inaugural season was over, he had committed an additional $25,000 to sustain the team. Thusly, a team in New York was guaranteed. A club in the biggest city in the country was an imperative need to a nascent NFL that was vying for national attention and fan attendance.
More than 70,000 people attended the Giants’ game against the Chicago Bears at the Polo Grounds in December of the inaugural season. The Bears had signed Red Grange, the most well-known professional football player of the 1920s, underscoring the importance of New York exposure. The very next year (1926), Grange and his agency established a competing American Football League and brought their star team, the Yankees, to compete against the Giants. The NFL and the Giants prevailed despite the fact that it was a costly battle. The AFL only existed for one season.
The Giants won their first NFL title in 1927, during their third season, thanks to a defense anchored by lineman Steve Owen that gave up an NFL record-low 20 points in 13 games. In 1930, Owen was hired as the Giants’ coach. He maintained the position for 23 seasons, compiling a final record of 153-108-17. In terms of coaching victories overall, he still comes in tenth. During the Owen era, the Giants experienced some of their best seasons. The Giants won eight Eastern division titles in 14 seasons starting with the commencement of divisional play in 1933, along with NFL championships in 1934 and 1938. Mel Hein, a center-linebacker who didn’t miss a game in 15 seasons, and triple-threat halfback Ken Strong were Giant’s standouts during the most of the 1930s and 1940s.
The Giants won the NFL championship in 1956 and six NFL Eastern titles in eight years, from 1956 to 1963, under the leadership of first Jim Lee Howell and then Allie Sherman. stars like Y. A. Tittle, Frank Gifford, Roosevelt Brown, Emlen Tunnell, and Andy Robustelli were the driving forces behind New York’s yearly run to the championship game. The Giants were out of the running for a title from 1964 through 1985. They won the NFC Eastern division championships in 1986, 1989, and 1990 under Bill Parcells’ leadership. They won the Super Bowl XXI match against Denver and the Super Bowl XXV against Buffalo to cap up the 1986 and 1990 campaigns, respectively.
The New York Giants have 49 individuals in their Ring of Honor and 32 members of the Pro Football Hall of Fame. In both the Giants Ring of Honor and the Hall of Fame, there are 17 players and coaches. Here are some of them:
The New Orleans Saints selected Morten Andersen in the fourth round of the 1982 NFL Draft, and he soon made his NFL debut. After 25 seasons, he retired from the game as the league’s leading scorer. He is one of a handful of players to have been selected to the 1980s and 1990s NFL All-Decade Teams. He made 565 of 709 field goals and 849 of 859 point-after tries in total. He topped all kickers in his conference in most field goals in 1985, 1987, and 1995, and led his teams in scoring 22 times. He also led the NFL in field goals in 1987 and the NFC in scoring in 1992.
Morris “Red” Badgro, who was 78 years old at the time, was the oldest individual ever to be inducted into the Pro Football Hall of Fame in 1981. A record-breaking 45 years passed between his final contest with the 1936 Brooklyn Dodgers of the National Football League and his election. The Badgro narrative is even more peculiar since Badgro wasn’t even convinced he wanted to play professional football; he actually quit from the NFL’s 1927 New York Yankees after only one season in order to try out pro baseball.
The New York Giants picked a 1952 Black All-America tackle from obscure Morgan State College in the 27th round of the National Football League Draft. Roosevelt Brown joined the Giants for his first summer training camp, and his youth and relative inexperience were immediately apparent. The Giants had an exceptional run of success during the apex of Rosey’s career, winning six divisional championships and one NFL championship in a span of eight years. He was almost always selected as an All-NFL player and was selected for nine Pro Bowls. Rosey handled the renowned Chicago Bears defenses so expertly in the 1956 NFL Championship Game that he was named Lineman of the Game.
Harry Carson, a defensive end in college, played four seasons at South Carolina State without missing a single game. He was chosen in the fourth round of the 1976 NFL Draft by the New York Giants and started his professional career as a linebacker. Halfway through his first season, Carson earned the starting middle linebacker job and was later selected for the All-NFL first Team. In the Super Bowl, it was Carson who made the “big play” when he stuffed Gerald Willhite for no gain during the Giants’ first-half goal line stand against the Broncos. Along with his nine Pro Bowl trips, Carson also earned first- or second-team All-Pro and All-NFC honors six times each.
In one of his first public comments after being hired head coach of the Boston Redskins in 1936, Ray Flaherty put himself solidly in the hot seat. When Ray learned that Wayne Millner had been signed, he sent his boss, George Preston Marshall, a message that read, “With that big Yankee playing end, please accept my resignation if we do not win the championship this year!” Ray’s coaching record for his entire career is 80 wins, 37 losses, and five ties, for a fantastic lifetime winning percentage of.676. Prior to becoming a coach, Ray had nine seasons as a superb end, playing for the New York Giants the most of the time.
Two-time All-America quarterback at Michigan, Benny Friedman played for the Brooklyn Dodgers (1932–1934), Cleveland Bulldogs (1927), Detroit Wolverines (1928), New York Giants (1929–1931), and Detroit Tigers (1929–1931). Only future Hall of Fame halfback Red Grange received more media attention in 1925 when he made the transition from college to the pros than the college football star did. Friedman was a dynamic player and field commander who could kick, run, and, most crucially, pass the ball better than any player before him and, for a long time, better than those after him.
By the time Frank Gifford was selected first overall by the New York Giants in the 1952 draft, he had already achieved unprecedented gridiron success in both high school and college. Frank played both offense and defense at the University of Southern California and was named All-America as a senior. He led the Giants to a league title in 1956 and was named the NFL’s Most Valuable Player that year. He received first- or second-team All-NFL honors six times. Even though the Giants were stacked with talented pro football players during the Gifford era, no one contributed more significantly to the team’s success year in and year out than Frank Gifford did.
On the White Earth Indian Reservation in Minnesota, Joe Guyon, an American Indian of the Chippewa Tribe, was born as O-Gee-Chidah. Guyon benefited from his athletic abilities by enrolling in college and pursuing a fulfilling job. Guyon joined the Giants in 1927 and was a key player in the New Yorkers’ 1927 NFL championship run. Away from Thorpe’s influence, Guyon had one of his best seasons and received the first major amount of attention since his undergraduate days. Guyon played a key part in helping his team, which finished second in scoring that season, by scoring the necessary points by displaying all of his various skills, including throwing, running, punting, tackling, and blocking.
In 14 years of professional football, halfback Ken Strong’s most well-known game was the 1934 National Football League Championship Game. Strong scored 17 points in that now-famous game, including two touchdowns, two extra points, and a field goal, helping his New York Giants defeat the Chicago Bears 30-13. In order to defeat the previously unbeaten Bears and win the championship, the Giants had to play that game on an ice-covered Polo Grounds field in their sneakers. His 17-point effort was an NFL title game record for over 30 years. Strong was an all-around athlete who was equally adept at running, blocking, passing, catching, punting, placekicking, and playing defense.
Pro football player Y.A. Tittle played for 17 seasons. He spent one season in the National Football League (1950) and three seasons with the All-America Football Conference’s Baltimore Colts (1947–1949). He spent his first ten seasons with the San Francisco 49ers before spending his final four with the New York Giants. Tittle had great individual numbers while playing for the Colts and 49ers, but he never managed to win a title. Tittle owned the NFL records for pass completions (2,118), passing yards (28,339), and touchdown passes (212) at the time of his retirement.
Facts about New York Giants
- Franchise was granted on August 1, 1925.
- The team’s first season was on 1925.
- Joined NFL Championships during 1927, 1934, 1938, and 1956.
- Joined NFC Championships during 1986, 1990, 2000, 2007, and 2011.
- Joined NFL Eastern Conference Championships during 1933, 1934, 1935, 1938, 1939, 1941, 1944, 1946, 1956, 1958, 1959, 1961, 1962, and 1963.
- Joined NFC Eastern Division Championships during1986, 1989, 1990,1997, and 2000.
- Joined NFC East Division Championships during 2005, 2008, and 2011.
- Their all-time record at the start of 2017 season was 708-597-33.
- Retired Uniform Numbers include #1 (Ray Flaherty), #4 (Tuffy Leemans), #7 (Mel Hein), #11 (Phil Simms), #14 (Ward Cuff and Y.A. Tittle), #16 (Frank Gifford), #32 (Al Blozis), #40 (Joe Morrison), #42 (Charlie Conerly), #50 (Ken Strong), and #56 (Lawrence Taylor).
- After Cuff retired, no Giants, according to Wellington Mara, would once again wear No. 14. Tittle sought and received the No. 14 when he was traded to the Giants in 1961. In memory of both players, the number has been retired.
The Giants have always been a family-owned enterprise. The club’s vice president for many years was Tim Mara II, who followed the club’s founder Tim Mara, who was replaced by his sons Jack and Wellington. Up until their deaths in 2005, Wellington Mara and Preston Robert Tisch, who each owned 50% of the club, shared the role of CEO. The Giants won the Super Bowl XLII championship in 2007 by defeating the previously unbeaten New England Patriots under the leadership of quarterback Eli Manning and defensive end Michael Strahan. Four years later, in Super Bowl XLVI, a rematch with the Patriots, Manning and the Giants triumphed once more.