Rams GM lands big hire with Spagnuolo

Posted by ESPN.com's Mike Sando

The Rams have to feel good about their ability to land Giants defensive coordinator Steve Spagnuolo as head coach given the recent state of the franchise in St. Louis.

Spagnuolo was the hot candidate a year ago. The Rams couldn't have pried him away if they had been interested in him at that time. No team could.

The Giants didn't finish this season with a Super Bowl title, but if Spagnuolo was a good coach one year ago, he should be a better one for having one more year of experience.

The Rams' interest in Spagnuolo comes as little surprise given his success in the NFL and his longstanding relationship with Rams general manager Billy Devaney. The hiring seemed less likely when the Rams appeared to show considerable interest in other candidates, even bringing in Cowboys offensive coordinator Jason Garrett a second time.

The relationship between Spagnuolo and Devaney was probably key in the Rams' ability to land such a high-profile candidate. This wasn't just a case of Devaney trusting Spagnuolo. Given the state of the Rams after two horrible seasons and a potentially unsettled ownership situation, Spagnuolo needed to trust Devaney when the general manager sold him on the Rams.