Predicting the starting defense for the NY Giants next season
Inside Linebackers: Blake Martinez, Micah McFadden
Last season, the NY Giants lost Blake Martinez to a torn ACL during their Week 3 matchup against the Atlanta Falcons. This made for a very rough season for the linebacker position, with Tae Crowder and Reggie Ragland taking the majority of the snaps at the position. Neither performed up to par.
With Martinez making his return, alongside a couple of promising rookie linebackers coming in, it is seeming like the Giants defense will benefit greatly from a rejuvenated LB core. While choosing Martinez as a starting LB was the obvious choice, it was quite a toss up between Micah McFadden, Tae Crowder and Darrian Beavers. However, due to McFadden’s potential to be a great player in pass coverage, something the Giants have desperately needed out of the LB position for quite a while, he stood out compared to the other two.
Despite this, it is likely that McFadden will be splitting snaps with both Crowder and potentially Beavers this season depending on the Giants defensive package. Despite us not being the biggest fan of Crowder’s ability, he will likely be a better run defender than McFadden right out the gate. Though if the Giants decide to drop the LBs into coverage, they should not hesitate to put McFadden in over Crowder, as Crowder is a very poor player in coverage.
The lack of talent in the LB room hurt the Giants defense deeply. If Martinez can return to his sub-Pro Bowl level and McFadden can show the upside we believe he has, then there is a very good chance that this defense can make some serious strides in 2022.