Giants interview Patrick Graham as head-coaching search marches on

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As the introductory press conference for general manager Joe Schoen was cranking up in the team’s field house, one interested spectator stood near the back. Patrick Graham, the Giants’ defensive coordinator, was on the scene Wednesday, wearing jeans and a sweatshirt. He did not stay for the duration of the event, excusing himself and saying he had to go change his clothes.

Later in the afternoon, Graham met with Schoen in a far different setting, interviewing for the Giants’ vacant head-coaching position.

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It was far from a day of all pomp and circumstances for Schoen. After stepping away from behind the microphone, he went back to work, as the search for a new head coach was ongoing and reaching the final stages. Schoen, co-owners John Mara and Steve Tisch and Chris Mara, the senior vice president of player personnel, met in the afternoon with Graham, under contract with the Giants and looking to make an impression and gain a promotion.

On Thursday, former Dolphins head coach Brian Flores arrives for his in-person sit-down — he did not have an earlier interview via teleconference — and this will be a significant part of the process, given Flores’ standing around the league. On Friday, Bills defensive coordinator (and former Vikings head coach) Leslie Frazier gets his live interview.

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brian flores, dan quinn, joe schoen, john mara, new york giants, patrick graham

Joe Schoen, Patrick Graham and Brian Flores

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N.Y. Post: Charles Wenzelberg, Robert Sabo and Getty Images

Brian Daboll, the Bills’ offensive coordinator, spent the day Tuesday with the Giants and he could be the favorite. Cowboys defensive coordinator (and former Falcons head coach) Dan Quinn and Bengals defensive coordinator Lou Anarumo also interviewed for the job.

Schoen needed no introduction to Daboll and Frazier, having worked with them the past four years in Buffalo.

“All of our candidates bring a different skill set to the table,’’ Schoen said. “I’m not concerned if they’ve been a head coach before or if they haven’t. I’m concerned with getting the best head coach for the New York Giants. If they’ve had previous coaching experience, fine. If they don’t, that’s fine.

“Brian Daboll I’ve worked with, I know Dan Quinn, I’ve got a lot of respect for him. Brian Flores is coming in. I know a lot of people in Miami, and I’ve got a lot of respect for him. Specifically on Brian [Daboll], he’s got good qualities just like the rest of the candidates, so I don’t want to speak on anything specific on him. But, again, it’s going to be imperative that it’s somebody that’s in lockstep with me that I can work with, we can have constant communication and we’re going to be aligned in our vision as we build a football team.’’

Co-owner Mara made it clear that Schoen is the point man for the head-coach search, outlining what is asked in the interviews, while Mara, Tisch and Chris Mara are in the room and speak up when they feel the need.

When it comes to final say, it resides where it always does with the Giants: ownership.

“He’s not gonna hire anybody we don’t want and we’re certainly not gonna hire anybody he doesn’t want,’’ Mara said. “Ownership always has the final approval over any decision like that.’’

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