Kevin Gilbride

Last updated

Kevin Gilbride
Kevin Gilbride at 2007 training camp.jpg
Gilbride at 2007 Giants training camp
Personal information
Born: (1951-08-27) August 27, 1951 (age 69)
New Haven, Connecticut
Career information
College: Southern Connecticut State
Career history
As a coach:
Career highlights and awards
Head coaching record
Regular season:6–16 (.273)
Coaching stats at PFR

Kevin Bernard Gilbride (born August 27, 1951) is an American football head coach. Gilbride was a coach for twenty years in the NFL, spending seven of them as the offensive coordinator for the New York Giants, with whom he earned two Super Bowl rings. From 1997–1998, Gilbride was the head coach for the San Diego Chargers. Most recently, Gilbride served as the head coach for the New York Guardians of the XFL.


Early life

Gilbride attended Southern Connecticut State University, where he played both quarterback and tight end and earned a degree in Physical Education. He then went to Idaho State University, where he earned a master's degree in athletic administration. [1]

College career (19741988)

Idaho State University (197475)

Gilbride's coaching career began in 1974 as a graduate assistant, where he served as linebackers coach for the 1974 season. Gilbride was also the co-head coach for the Idaho State women's basketball team in their inaugural year. [2]

Tufts University (197677)

Gilbride joined Tufts prior to the 1976 season as a linebackers coach. He held that position for two seasons. Following the 1977 season, he joined American International College.

American International College (197879)

He was a Defensive Coordinator at American International College (AIC) in Springfield, Massachusetts for two seasons. [3]

Southern Connecticut State (198084)

He would later coach at his alma mater for five seasons starting in 1980 and compiled a 35-14-2 overall record. [4]

ECU Pirates (198788)

Passing game coordinator (1987)

Gilbride spent his first year overseeing the passing game, in a sort of quarterback-coach like position.

Offensive coordinator (1988)

Gilbride's team finished 3-8, winning their first game, and then their final two. [5] Following the season he was hired by the Houston Oilers as their quarterback coach and made the jump to the National Football League.

Professional coaching career

Canadian Football League

Ottawa Rough Riders (198586)

Gilbride served as assistant coach for the Rough Riders in 1985. The team finished 7-9 but made the playoffs, where they lost in the eastern semi-final to the Montreal Concordes. [6] The next season they were 3-10 and failed to qualify for the postseason.

National Football League

From 1989–2014, Gilbride served as an assistant with a number of NFL franchises, working as quarterbacks coach and offensive coordinator.

Houston Oilers (19891994)

Quarterbacks coach (19891990)

Gilbride began his NFL career as a quarterbacks coach for the Oilers. In his first season, quarterback Warren Moon passed for over 3,600 yards with 23 touchdowns against 14 interceptions. [7]

Offensive coordinator (19901994)

Following a solid year by Moon, the Oilers named Gilbride Offensive Coordinator for the 1990 season. During his time with the Oilers, Gilbride ran a variation of the Run & Shoot offense. The team finished in the top 5 in scoring each year with Gilbride as offensive coordinator. The team scored 405 points in Gilbride's first season, including Moon passing for 33 touchdowns against 13 interceptions for over 4,000 yards. Despite the offense finishing second in the league, the team finished 9-7, second in the division. [8]

The next season, the Oilers finished 11-5 to win the division. [9] Gilbride's offense finished fourth in the league with 386 points, the fourth ranked offense in the league and second in yards. [10]

The 1992 season saw Houston finish with a 10-6 record, second to the Pittsburgh Steelers. Gilbride's offense scored 352 points, good for sixth in the league. In the classic 1992 AFC Wild Card Game against the Buffalo Bills, dubbed "The Comeback" by Bills fans, [11] the Oilers led 28-3 at halftime, but Buffalo scored 38 unanswered points to capture the victory. [12] During the season, Gilbride was diagnosed with a rare form of Kidney Cancer. He had surgery on December 10. [13] Injured quarterback Warren Moon, along with wide receiver coach Chris Palmer, stepped in as acting offensive coordinators. [14]

The following season, the Oilers improved to 12-4 scoring 368 points, fourth in the league. The team began 1-4, but rebounded, winning their final eleven games to capture a playoff berth and a first-round bye. Despite losing to the Chiefs in the second round, the offense was fourth in the league and 368 points and over 5,000 yards. [15] A very memorable moment from Gilbride's career may be a 1993 season sideline incident which resulted in defensive coordinator Buddy Ryan throwing a punch at Gilbride during a nationally televised game against the New York Jets. [16]

The 1994 Oilers finished with a dismal 2-14 record, and the last-ranked offense in the league. [17]

In an episode of A Football Life chronicling the 1993 Oilers, Kevin Gilbride said of his experience with the punch in Houston that: "Through all the things you've been fortunate to be part of, that you're proud if, this is the last thing you want to be considered, you know, attached to for the rest of your life but uh it happened." [18]

Jacksonville Jaguars (19951996)

For their inaugural season in 1995, the Jaguars hired Tom Coughlin as head coach and Gilbride as offensive coordinator. [19] The team finished 4-12 scoring just 275 points, 27th in the league. [20] The following year, the team went 9-7 scoring 325 points, fourteenth in the league, but second in yards. The Jaguars defeated the Buffalo Bills in the AFC Wild Card Game 30-27, and then the Denver Broncos in the AFC Divisional Game by the same score, but lost to the New England Patriots in the AFC Championship Game 20-6. [21] Following the season, Gilbride was hired by the San Diego Chargers to fill their head coach position vacated after Bobby Ross stepped down.

San Diego Chargers (19971998)

In his first season as head coach, Gilbride's Chargers finished 4-12, scoring just 266 points (26th in the league) while allowing 425 (last in the league). [22] The following year was not much better, as the team scored 241 points (29th in the league), and finished 29th in the league. [23] He was fired on October 14, 1998. [24]

Pittsburgh Steelers (19992000)

On January 7, 1999, Gilbride was hired as Offensive Coordinator for the Steelers. [25] The team scored 317 points and finished 6-10, with the 17th ranked offense and 22nd in yards. [26] The next year, the team improved to 9-7, with the 17th ranked offense in the league, scoring 321 points. Following the 2000 season, he was fired. [27]

Out of the Leaguebroadcasting (2001)

Gilbride was hired by ESPN in 2001, where he served as an NFL analyst for that season. [28] [29]

Buffalo Bills (20022003)

Following a season where they finished 13th in the league in total offense, the Bills hired Gilbride on February 9, 2002. The Bills finished 8-8, scoring 379 points, [30] but set seven team records. [31] The following year, the team finished 6-10, and 30th in the league in total points with just 243. [32] Gilbride left the team after being hired by the New York Giants on January 26, 2004. [33]

Gilbride (left) with Eli Manning in 2010. Eli Manning with clipboard.jpg
Gilbride (left) with Eli Manning in 2010.

New York Giants (20042013)

Quarterbacks coach (20042006)

In 2004, Gilbride was reunited with Tom Coughlin in New York, where he became the Giants' quarterbacks coach. He worked with Eli Manning in that position for three years during which Manning, after replacing Kurt Warner, led the Giants to a 1-6 record, leaving the team with an overall 6-10 record. He subsequently improved in 2005 to lead the team to an 11-5 record, capturing not only their first playoff berth since 2002, but their first division title since 2000. The Giants returned to the playoffs in 2006 but were ousted in the first round by the Philadelphia Eagles. [34] Following that season, the Giants announced that the entire coaching staff would return on one-year contracts for the 2007 season. [35]

Offensive coordinator (20062013)

Midway in the 2006 season, Gilbride was named interim Offensive Coordinator. The 'interim' tag was removed following the season, and on January 18, 2007 Gilbride was officially announced as the Offensive Coordinator. [36] [37] In his first full season, the Giants went 106 and defeated the heavily favored Green Bay Packers on a Lawrence Tynes field goal in overtime of the NFC Championship Game to set up a trip to Super Bowl XLII against the undefeated New England Patriots. In what is called one of the greatest upsets of all-time, the Giants won 1714 to capture their third Super Bowl title.

Under Gilbride, the Giants had four years where their offense has scored 400 or more points.

In 2008, the Giants finished with a 124 record, but were ousted in the first round of the playoffs by the Eagles. Gilbride's offense scored 427 points, third in the NFL. [38]

In 2008, the Oakland Raiders received permission to interview Gilbride for their vacant head coach position. [39] The job eventually went to Tom Cable.

The following year, the Giants fell to 88, yet still scored 402 points, good for eighth in the league, and the fourth highest total in team history. [40]

In 2010, the Giants improved to 106, starting 62. However, a rash of injuries down the stretch doomed the Giants as they once again missed the playoffs. [41] Despite the poor finish, the Giants had the seventh ranked offense in points and fifth in yards. [42]

Following a tumultuous free agency period and some bad injuries prior to the season, the Giants began 2011 with a loss against Washington. By the bye week, they had a 42 record after defeating the Buffalo Bills in week 6. The team had a 62 record by week 9, which fell to 77 after a week 15 loss to the Redskins. However, they won a Christmas Eve game against the crosstown rival Jets, followed by a Week 17 game to sweep the Dallas Cowboys in the season series.

In the first round of the playoffs, they handily defeated the Atlanta Falcons 242 holding them to a first quarter safety being their only score. This was followed by a 3720 divisional win against the Green Bay Packers, and set up another NFC Championship game appearance. The Giants faced the San Francisco 49ers in a game that ended 2017 with Lawrence Tynes kicking a game-winner to send the Giants to the Super Bowl.

In Super Bowl XLVI, the Giants once again faced the Patriots, and as they had four years prior, they defeated New England 2117 to capture their fourth title. For the season, they finished 9th in the league in offense scoring 394 points while allowing 400. Gilbride earned his second Super Bowl ring after the victory. [43] [44]

For the 2012 season, the Giants finished 97 once again, but missed the playoffs. They scored 429 points, sixth in the league, but missed the playoffs again despite starting 64, going 33 after the bye week. [45]

In 2013, the Giants began 06, causing many people to question Gilbride's future with the team. [46] the team rebounded however, and won 7 of their final 10 games. Despite his two Super Bowl rings with the team, fans had grown impatient with the offense. At the end of the season, owner John Mara said "I think our offense is broken right now. We need to fix that". [47]

On January 2, 2014, it was announced that Gilbride would retire. [48]


New York Guardians (2020)

On April 16, 2019, Gilbride was introduced as the first head coach of the XFL's New York team, later named the New York Guardians. [49]

Head coaching record


Southern Connecticut Owls (NCAA Division II independent)(1980–1984)
1980 Southern Connecticut5–4–1
1981 Southern Connecticut6–3–1
1982 Southern Connecticut9–1
1983 Southern Connecticut8–3
1984 Southern Connecticut7–3
Southern Connecticut:35–14–2
Total:35–14–2 [50]


TeamYearRegular SeasonPost Season
WonLostTiesWin %FinishWonLostWin %Result
SD 1997 4120.2504th in AFC West----
SD 1998 240.333Fired----
SD Total6160.27300
Total [51] 6160.27300


TeamYearRegular seasonPostseason
WonLostTiesWin %FinishWonLostWin %Result
NYG 2020 320.600T-1st in XFL East00.000TBD

The Spring League

TeamYearRegular seasonPostseason
WonLostTiesWin %FinishWonLostWin %Result
Jousters 2021 420.6671st in TSL South01.000Lost to Linemen in Mega Bowl

Personal life

Gilbride and his wife, Deborah, have three children: daughters Kelly and Kristen and son, Kevin M. Gilbride. Kelly is a 1998 graduate of Harvard University, Kristen graduated from the University of Connecticut in 1999, and the younger Kevin graduated from the University of Hawaii in 2003 and was the former Bears' tight ends coach. [52]

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  52. New York Giants Bio