The Giants have a dynamic pass rush trio developing in the trenches

nfl: new york giants at washington commanders, kayvon thibodeaux
Credit: Geoff Burke-USA TODAY Sports

The New York Giants‘ defense received an added boost this offseason when they added edge rusher Brian Burns in free agency. Burns joins the likes of Dexter Lawerence and Kayvon Thibodeaux to create a dynamic trio on the Giants’ defensive line.

Brian Burns is the newest addition to the Giants’ defensive front

Oct 29, 2023; Charlotte, North Carolina, USA; Carolina Panthers linebacker Brian Burns (0) react after a sack in the second quarter at Bank of America Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports
Credit: Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports

The Giants pulled off a blockbuster trade for Burns earlier this offseason. They then signed him to a lucrative five-year, $141 million deal. Burns has been one of the league’s best edge rushers during his NFL career. Burns spent the first five seasons of his career with the Carolina Panthers, accumulating 46.0 sacks and being named to the Pro Bowl in both 2021 and 2022. At just 26 years old, Burns figures to be a staple on the Giants’ defensive line for the foreseeable future.

Dexter Lawrence is aiming to continue his dominant defensive prowess

New York Giants defensive tackle Dexter Lawrence II (97) before the game against the San Francisco 49ers at Levi's Stadium

Along with Burns, DT Dexter Lawerence will look to continue his dominance as one of the league’s best players in 2024. Lawrence has broken out as one of the NFL’s finest talents over the last two seasons, accumulating 12 sacks combined since 2022, with 49 QB hits and 14 tackles for loss in that same span.

Lawerence has been named to the Pro Bowl in both 2022, and 2023, as well as being named Second Team All-Pro in both seasons. The 26-year-old will be going for his third straight All-Pro season with a revamped Giants’ defensive front.

Kayvon Thibodeaux is looking to make a big statement in his third NFL season

Dec 25, 2023; Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA; New York Giants linebacker Kayvon Thibodeaux (5) against the Philadelphia Eagles at Lincoln Financial Field. Mandatory Credit: Eric Hartline-USA TODAY Sports
Credit: Eric Hartline-USA TODAY Sports

Rounding out the trio is DE Kayvon Thibodeaux, who is coming off of a breakout second season in the NFL. After managing just 4.0 sacks in his rookie season, many feared that the 2022 first-round pick may never live up to expectations. Thibodeaux responded in a big way in 2023, accumulating 11.5 sacks, 16 QB hits, and 12 tackles for loss, and three forced fumbles.

Despite these impressive numbers, Thibodeaux was far from perfect, managing just 26 solo tackles, and 11 assists with a middling 58.4 overall Pro Football Focus grade, lower than his 71.9 grade in his rookie season. Thibodeaux will be looking to put it all together for a big season in year three in the NFL.

New York will aim to bounce back following a disappointing 6-11 season in 2023. Big performances from Big Blue’s defense could be beneficial to the Giants’ chances in the NFC East.

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