Giants hiring blitzing maestro Don “Wink” Martindale as team’s new defensive coordinator

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The New York Giants have hired their next defensive coordinator, Don “Wink” Martindale. Brian Daboll’s coaching staff is shaping out with this hiring that will fill his last available coordinator position. Martindale will fill the position left behind by Patrick Graham after Graham left New York for Las Vegas last week.

What does Wink Martindale bring to the table?

Don Martindale runs a fast-paced, high-flying defensive scheme that was tremendously successful in Baltimore. No one blitzes more than Martindale.

Ravens Blitz percentage under Don Martindale:

  • 2018- 1st (39.6%)
  • 2019- 1st (54.9%)
  • 2020 – 1st (44.1%)
  • 2021 – 6th (31.1%)

Martindale is a blitz maestro. His blitz-heavy defenses ranked in the top three in the NFL from 2018-2020. Before an injury-filled 2021 season, the Ravens ranked No. 1 in the NFL in fewest yards (307.8) and points per game (18.2) in Martindale’s first three seasons as DC (2018-20).

Don Martindale has been regarded as one of the best defensive coordinators in the NFL during his time in Baltimore. His talent was recognized by the Giants in 2020 when Martindale interviewed for New York’s vacant head coaching position. Ultimately, the job went to Joe Judge, but now, two years later, Wink is joining the Giants’ staff as their next defensive coordinator.

What to expect from Wink’s defensive scheme:

The New York Giants have been running a 3-4 defensive scheme for years now. Patrick Graham utilized a base 3-4 with a variety of unique blitz packages. A blitz-heavy 3-4 defense is exactly what Don Martindale will bring to the Big Apple.

Continuing with a scheme like this will provide at least some continuity for the Giants’ defensive players. But there is a chance that Martindale’s scheme would provide New York with a major upgrade. Not only will the Giants’ pass-rushing improve under Martindale, but their rushing defense should improve, too.

Don Martindale’s rush defense:

The Baltimore Ravens possessed a top-ten run defense in each of the four years that Don Martindale was the team’s defensive coordinator. This past season, the Ravens’ run defense ranked first in the NFL. The Ravens’ banged-up defense allowed only 1,436 yards on the ground in 2021.

For comparison, the New York Giants ranked 25th in the NFL in rushing defense. The Giants allowed 2,193 rushing yards this season. If hired as the next defensive coordinator of the Giants, Don “Wink” Martindale would instantly improve the team’s rush defense while installing an uber-aggressive 3-4 defense that has proven to be greatly successful.

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