1976 New York Giants season
Head coachBill Arnsparger (fired, 0–7)
John McVay (interim, 3–4)
Home fieldGiants Stadium
Results
Record3–11
Division place5th NFC East
Playoff finishDid not qualify
Pro BowlersLB Brad Van Pelt

The 1976 New York Giants season was the franchise's 52nd season in the National Football League. The Giants had a 3–11 record in 1976 and finished last in the five-team NFC East.[1][2]

The season was highlighted by the opening of the new Giants Stadium at the New Jersey Meadowlands in East Rutherford on October 10. In the first game at the stadium, after four road games to open the season, the defending NFC champion Dallas Cowboys handed New York a 24–14 loss.[1][3][4] The Giants then suffered defeats against the Minnesota Vikings and Pittsburgh Steelers,[5] falling to 0–7 after week 7.[1] At this time, they fired third-year head coach Bill Arnsparger, whose Giants teams had lost 28 times in 35 games.[6] John McVay was named the team's interim coach,[7] although director of operations Andy Robustelli said the appointment was "not strictly" on a temporary basis.[8]

New York lost its first two games under McVay, against the Philadelphia Eagles and Cowboys.[8] The Giants' first win at Giants Stadium came on November 14, when they defeated the Washington Redskins 12–9; it was their first victory of the season after nine consecutive losses and the first over a George Allen-coached team in 15 tries.[1][9] In their final four games, they won twice. Linebacker Brad Van Pelt became the first Giant to receive a Pro Bowl invitation since 1972.[9] Following the season, McVay was retained as head coach, signing a two-year contract.[8]

For the 1976 season and now based in New Jersey,[10] the Giants debuted their new helmet design, changing from a stylized “NY” to the word “GIANTS”, underlined in block letters. They wore these exact helmets through the 1979 season; in 1980, the helmet's white stripes were eliminated. These helmets remained unchanged through 1999.[11]

Roster

1976 New York Giants roster
Quarterbacks

Running backs

Wide receivers

Tight ends

Offensive linemen

Defensive linemen

Linebackers

Defensive backs

Special teams

Reserve lists


Practice squad



Rookies in italics

Schedule

Week Date Opponent Result Attendance
1 September 12 at Washington Redskins L 19–17
54,245
2 September 19 at Philadelphia Eagles L 20–7
66,005
3 September 26 at Los Angeles Rams L 24–10
60,698
4 October 3 at St. Louis Cardinals L 27–21
48,039
5 October 10 Dallas Cowboys L 24–14
76,042
6 October 17 at Minnesota Vikings L 24–7
46,508
7 October 24 Pittsburgh Steelers L 27–0
69,783
8 October 31 Philadelphia Eagles L 10–0
68,690
9 November 7 at Dallas Cowboys L 9–3
58,870
10 November 14 Washington Redskins W 12–9
72,975
11 November 21 at Denver Broncos L 14–13
63,151
12 November 28 Seattle Seahawks W 28–16
65,111
13 December 5 Detroit Lions W 24–10
66,069
14 December 12 St. Louis Cardinals L 17–14
60,553

Standings

NFC East
W L T PCT DIV CONF PF PA STK
Dallas Cowboys(2) 11 3 0 .786 6–2 9–3 296 194 L1
Washington Redskins(4) 10 4 0 .714 6–2 9–3 291 217 W4
St. Louis Cardinals 10 4 0 .714 5–3 9–3 309 267 W2
Philadelphia Eagles 4 10 0 .286 2–6 4–8 165 286 W1
New York Giants 3 11 0 .214 1–7 3–9 170 250 L1

References

  1. ^ a b c d "1976 New York Giants". Pro Football Reference. Archived from the original on May 31, 2009. Retrieved May 9, 2009.
  2. ^ "1976 NFL Standings & Team Stats". Pro Football Reference. Retrieved March 9, 2021.
  3. ^ Whittingham, pp. 175–176.
  4. ^ "1975 NFL Standings, Team & Offensive Statistics". Pro Football Reference. Retrieved October 23, 2014.
  5. ^ Whittingham, p. 176.
  6. ^ Myers, Gary (November 13, 2017). "Giants sacking Ben McAdoo midseason would have sent right message despite few interim options". New York Daily News. Retrieved January 2, 2018.
  7. ^ Harris, p. 66.
  8. ^ a b c Icatz, Michael (December 15, 1976). "McVay Is Rehired as Giants' Coach for Two Years". The New York Times. Retrieved January 2, 2018.
  9. ^ a b Whittingham, p. 180.
  10. ^ Howard, Johnette (February 10, 2012). "Call 'em the N.Y. and/or N.J. Giants". ESPN New York. Retrieved October 23, 2014.
  11. ^ Salomone, Dan (June 27, 2013). "Watch: Giants uniform breakdown & history". New York Giants. Archived from the original on July 1, 2013. Retrieved February 18, 2019.

Bibliography