Giants’ Joe Judge has big supporters in Bill Belichick, Nick Saban

The nine words carry plenty of weight on their own.

Add in that they come from Bill Belichick? The scale could break.

“One of the best coaches I have been around” is how Belichick — the six-time Super Bowl-winning head coach of the Patriots — describes new Giants head coach Joe Judge.

Judge, who spent eight seasons on Belichick’s staff, was special-teams coordinator and wide receivers coach in 2019. Belichick called Giants ownership to recommend Judge before he was offered the job Wednesday, as the fifth candidate to interview.

“He has been responsible for coaching units comprised of nearly every player on the roster,” Belichick said in a statement. “That requires an ability to handle many moving parts, make constant adjustments and immediate decisions.”

Bill Belichick, Joe Judge and Nick Saban
Bill Belichick, Joe Judge and Nick SabanGetty Images (2); AP

Judge is the 12th former Belichick assistant to become an NFL head coach. The results have been mixed, but two (Mike Vrabel, Titans; Bill O’Brien, Texans) still are alive in the NFL playoffs.

“Joe has done an outstanding job,” Belichick said. “He’s an excellent coach. He understands the game well, works extremely hard and is a very good teacher of fundamentals. Joe picks up concepts and coaching points quickly. He is an exceptional leader.”

Belichick hired Judge off the Alabama staff of his friend Nick Saban. Judge was a special-teams analyst (not an on-field coach) with the Crimson Tide from 2009-11.

“Joe did a fantastic job for our program early on in our tenure in Tuscaloosa,” Saban said in a statement. “He went on to have a lot of success on Bill’s staff in New England. Joe is one of the brightest young coaches in our profession, and I think he will do a tremendous job as the head coach of the New York Giants.”

Luring either Saban or Belichick to become head coach long has been a Giants dream scenario. In Judge, they hired a coach who won five championships (two NCAA titles and three Super Bowls) under the two icons.

“They are getting an extremely smart football coach who is very loyal, organized and diligent about getting the job done,” Saban said. “We wish Joe and his entire family the best of luck with the Giants.”

For more on the Giants, listen to the latest episode of the “Blue Rush” podcast:

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