When Dave Gettleman took over as general manager of the New York Giants in December of 2017, he faced an uphill battle. His predecessor, Jerry Reese, in a swing for the fences the year before had taken on a slew of humongous salaries that had begun to bog the team down, impeding their chance to get any better.

Gettleman went to work right away, evaluating who he wanted to move forward with and who he didn’t. In due time we found out who those players were. He had to purge the roster of the bloated contracts Reese doled out as well as some of the draft picks he felt were not fitting in.

A year and change later, he’s made quite a dent in that project jettisoning defensive tackle Damon “Snacks” Harrison, outside linebacker Olivier Vernon, cornerback Eli Apple, offensive tackles Ereck Flowers and Bobby Hart and most famously, wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr. and safety Landon Collins. Not to mention the scores of others the Giants chose not re-sign as fee agents.

It’s difficult to perceive the Giants would — or could — be a better team in the future after this purge. But, there is a method behind Gettleman’s madness. He has a vision (we believe) and he is fulfilling it. Like any other radical change, first comes the pain, then the pleasure.

In reviewing Gettleman’s moves, we try to see the world from his chair. Many fans are scratching their heads while others are in full support.

Is he taking the team in the right direction? Let’s take a look.

Trying to guess what Gettleman’s vision is has become a parlor game among both pundits and fans alike. He has been working in the football personnel business for decades and we have to trust he knows better than we do. He has a history of cutting veterans abruptly with the mindset that he’ rather let them go a year too early than a year too late.

With the Giants, many of these moves come at a high price. Yes, they received players and draft picks in return in those trades, but the moves also left behind a boatload of dead money.

$33.8 million of it, to be exact. Much of that goes away after this season. Next year, the Giants are scheduled to have approximately $80 million in free cap space. Plenty of ammunition to dedicate to free agents.

But what about the team? Gettleman gutted the Giants of some their best players, many of them who were in their prime. How will they be replaced?

The team will be fine. Players come and players go. The Giants have already back-filled many of the positions those players left behind plus they have 12 draft picks to dedicate to filling the rest.

The Beckham trade has already reaped a starting safety (Jabrill Peppers) and will likely bring in to two more starters at other positions in this draft. The salary relief left behind by the trade will end up going to pay several other players over the next three seasons.

They brought in veteran Golden Tate, who is not Beckham talent-wise, but is reliable and productive. Gone are the distractions that were the residual effect of Beckham’s stardom. In comes a more dream-oriented approach in which the Giants can get back to the business of winning football games.

Collins was given a six-year, $84 million contract by Washington even though he hasn’t completed his rehab on a torn labrum in his shoulder. The Giants were not willing to commit to him long-term and Collins was not feeling the franchise tag, so they let him go. He has been replaced by Peppers and veteran Antoine Bethea, a Pro Bowl talent who led the Arizona Cardinals in tackles last year. Both can play strong and free safety and are better in space than Collins.

Vernon’s end of the trade with Cleveland garnered a steady guard in Kevin Zeitler. He will go a long way in boosting the performance of the offensive line. Apple has been hot and cold for the Saints thus far and Harrison and Beckham are looking for new deals already from their new teams.

The NFL is a business and the Giants have finally stopped to realize that. Hard choices had to be made and more are coming. Quarterback Eli Manning’s contract will expire at the end of this season and Giants career should expire along with it.

The purge will finally be complete, but in this day and age in the NFL, the carousel and the revolving door are a way of life. Giant fans have to face that going forward.