NEW YORK (Reuters) - Tom Coughlin stepped down as head coach of the National Football League’s New York Giants on Monday after a 12-year reign with the team that produced two Super Bowl triumphs.
Coughlin, who at 69 was the NFL’s oldest coach, announced his decision a day after New York (6-10) concluded their third consecutive losing campaign and fourth successive season missing the playoffs.
“It is in the best interest of the organization that I step down as head coach,” Coughlin said in a statement after meeting with the team owners. “I strongly believe the time is right for me and my family, and as I said, the Giants organization.”
Coughlin compiled a 102-90 record during his head coaching run with the Giants and a sparkling 8-3 postseason record that included Super Bowl upset victories over New England in the 2007 and 2011 seasons.
He was also an assistant coach in the Giants’ Super Bowl victory over Buffalo in 1991.
Coughlin previously served as head coach of the expansion Jacksonville Jaguars, leading them to the American Football Conference championship game in only their second season.
“He’s been a great coach to play for and I’ve learned so much from him, from an early age when I got here to every year,” Giants quarterback Eli Manning, who joined the team the same year as Coughlin took charge, told reporters on Monday.
“He’s got a great football mind and loves what he’s doing and a great passion.”
Coughlin, whose 170 regular season wins puts him 12th on the NFL’s all-time list for coaches, had one year remaining on his contract.
“This is a not a sad occasion for me. I have spent 15 years with this organization as an assistant and head coach and was fortunate to be part of three Super Bowl winning teams,” said Coughlin.
”A Lombardi Trophy every five years is an achievement in which we all take great pride.
“Obviously, the past three years have not been what any of us expect, and as head coach, I accept the responsibility for those seasons.”
Reporting by Larry Fine; Editing by Frank Pingue