Giants’ Wink Martindale has big plans for newly acquired athletic freak

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The New York Giants have pulled off what could be considered a match made in heaven, securing former Arizona Cardinals first-round pick Isaiah Simmons. In a savvy move, General Manager Joe Schoen traded a seventh-round pick and absorbed $1 million of Simmons’s contract to bolster the team’s defense during a contract year.

Simmons’ Athletic Versatility: A Boon for Giants’ Defense

At 25, Isaiah Simmons brings an eclectic mix of experience and versatility to the Giants. He has logged almost 2,300 defensive snaps in his career thus far, including 897 just last season. In his three-year career, Simmons has spent time in various positions: 436 snaps on the defensive line, 1,086 in the box, 63 at free safety, 645 in the slot, and 67 at cornerback.

In short, Simmons has what can best be described as a position-less style of play. The Cardinals, unfortunately, couldn’t capitalize on this, stunting his growth. But Giants’ defensive coordinator, Wink Martindale, is beyond thrilled about the acquisition. Martindale sees Simmons as an ideal fit for specialized sub-packages and a key asset in both run-stopping and coverage.

“He’s perfect for this defense. … It’s not about what position we’re gonna play him; we’re gonna play him wherever we need him because he can do so many different things. I’ve talked before about positionless defense. He’s perfect for that.”

Simmons’ Past Performances: Room for Improvement?

Last season’s statistics for Simmons are a mixed bag. He notched 70 tackles but had an 11.7% missed tackle rate. He also had an 83.8% reception rate against him, yielding 527 yards and three touchdowns. While Simmons has shown some weaknesses in coverage, he’s displayed enough flashes of brilliance to suggest untapped potential. His record as a run defender has been somewhat erratic, but the Giants are keen to maximize his value.

Simmons vs. McFadden: The Battle for Position

As of now, Simmons is positioned behind Micah McFadden, a second-year fifth-round pick hailing from Indiana. Standing at 6-foot-4 and weighing 238 pounds, McFadden has the physical attributes to make an impact. However, don’t expect him to do more than pass-rushing and assisting in specialized sub-packages, at least early in the season. Simmons will need some time to carve out his niche within the Giants’ defensive framework, but his versatile skill set makes him a strong candidate to become an impact player.

This latest move by the Giants is intriguing, to say the least, and the addition of Simmons to their defensive line-up has the potential to be a game-changer. Keep an eye on how Simmons adapts and evolves in his new role with Big Blue.

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