Giants bringing back veteran OLB Jihad Ward

new york giants
Oct 30, 2022; Seattle, Washington, USA; Seattle Seahawks running back Kenneth Walker III (9) rushes for a touchdown against New York Giants linebacker Jihad Ward (55) during the fourth quarter at Lumen Field. Mandatory Credit: Joe Nicholson-USA TODAY Sports

The New York Giants are re-signing veteran edge rusher Jihad Ward, per Jordan Raanan of ESPN. Ward was signed by the Giants last offseason, reuniting with defensive coordinator Wink Martindale after spending the 2020 season under Martindale’s tutelage with the Baltimore Ravens.

Giants re-signing Jihad Ward

Jihad Ward served as a solid depth piece on the Giants’ defense in 2022, totaling a career-highs 43 combined tackles and seven tackles for loss. Ward played in all 17 games for Big Blue, making 11 starts, and totaling three sacks on the season.

Ward played primarily as an edge-setting run-stopper in Martindale’s defense last year. He is also considered a “locker room favorite,” serving as a veteran leader for Big Blue’s defense.

Ward is a 6-foot-5, 287-pound run-stopper entering his ninth season in the NFL. At 28 years old, Ward is one of the oldest players on the Giants’ youthful defense.

Kayvon Thibodeaux and Azeez Ojulari are New York’s projected starters on the edge, but considering the injury history of both players, bringing back a veteran linebacker in Jihad Ward is a smart move. Ward is a perfect scheme fit in Wink Martindale’s system and brings the tenacity to the team that Martindale is seeking.

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