New York Giants: How veteran defender Markus Golden can leave his mark

New York Giants

The New York Giants have invested in the rebuilding of the defensive front with Dalvin Tomlinson, Dexter Lawrence, and B.J. Hill as their three down-lineman. Those three players are vital cogs in the run game and in disrupting the pass. However, the Giants are relying on several inexperienced outside linebackers to head their pass-rush.

Drafting Oshane Ximines with their third-round pick, Big Blue is looking to improve upon a terrible 2018 season in the sack-department. They tallied just 30 total sacks. Trading away Olivier Vernon probably won’t help either, but the Giants did bring in one veteran that can make an impact.

What are the New York Giants getting in Markus Golden?

Former Arizona Cardinal, Markus Golden is the veteran of the group, looking to revitalize his career after battling injuries in recent seasons. Defensive coordinator James Bettcher speaks of his defense with optimism, but he knows the quality of talent he has on the roster, and his primary goal is to extract every last ounce of it.

Golden is three years removed from a 12.5 sacks, 22 QB hits season. Those numbers attest to what he’s capable of on the football field, and what the Giants are hopefully getting out of the 28-year-old. An ACL tear in 2017 has damaged his performance, but it seems the veteran is finally back to full health.

“Now that my leg is healthy, of course I feel like I’m back,” he told SNY. “I’ve been doing this my whole life. It’s like, if you’re healthy, you’re able to go out and perform. I’m not even thinking about it. I feel ready physically and ready mentally.”

Pairing up with Lorenzo Carter on the opposite side, both Golden and the second-year Giant will help exponentially in recording more total sacks and quarterback hits. Bettcher will rely heavily on his outside linebacker to create a pass rush and unsettle the opposing quarterback in an attempt to force mistakes and get the ball back in Eli Manning’s hands.

Against the Bears, Golden absolutely obliterated a blocking tight end, sacking the QB and showing he still has some juice left in the tank. Hopefully, Bettcher will find a way to match Golden up with TEs and allow him to produce at a high level.