Credits: Matt Kartozian
Giants make great hire with James Bettcher:
For the New York Giants, finding a solid defensive coordinator to complement offensive maestro Pat Shurmur is essential for the balance of the team.
The Giants decided on former Arizona Cardinals defensiveness coordinator James Brettcher over former head coach of the Las Vegas Raiders, Jack Del Rio.
With the Cardinals, Bettcher had a top six defense in each of his first three years with Arizona — an impressive young coach joining the ranks in New York.
The most enticing part about Bettcher is his defensive scheme and how he enjoys utilizing linebackers. This selection for the Giants almost guarantees they will be addressing the linebacker position during the offseason (here’s a fantastic option for the Giants in the draft at LB). The new DC for the Giants loves to use linebackers in coverage and requires them to be fast and capable of making tackles in space.
With Arizona, Bettcher had linebacker Deone Buccanon, a multi-faceted defender with the ability to cover tight ends and make open field tackles. He is also stellar against the run. Finding an all-around play-maker in the middle of the field is essential in the success of a defense, and it’s something the Giants have ignored for years.
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Here’s a look at the type of LB Bettcher will be looking for:
Bettcher plays out of the 3-4 defense, lining up three defensive-lineman and four linebackers on most plays.
What does this mean?
It means he will likely be relying on Olivier Vernon, Jason Pierre-Paul, Damon Harrison and Dalvin Tomlinson to wreck havoc on opposing offensive lines and quarterbacks. He will likely rotate in defensive lineman and maintain his three lineman and four linebacker approach. It’s unknown whether the Giants will choose to transition from their 4-3 defense to the 3-4, but it shouldn’t be ruled out with the hiring of Bettcher.
His scheme revolves heavily around man-coverage and having players that can not only tackle, but drop back into coverage as well. He keep this middle of the field restricted and forces the ball to the outsides.
With Janoris Jenkins, Landon Collins, Eli Apple and Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie manning the boundaries, the Giants have all the support they need to lock up the exterior of the playing field.
The Giants struggled in 2017 to stop the run due to poor linebacker support, and often allowed big-plays on wide-receiver screens and crossing-routes. The solidification of the middle of the field will essentially make those types of plays non-existent, and will completely take out a portion of the opposing offense’s playbook.