4 NY Giants Players on defense who must rise to the occassion in Week 1

ARLINGTON, TEXAS – OCTOBER 10: Tyler Biadasz #63 of the Dallas Cowboys and guard Connor Williams #52 defend against Leonard Williams #99 of the New York Giants during an NFL game at AT&T Stadium on October 10, 2021 in Arlington, Texas. (Photo by Cooper Neill/Getty Images)

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The New York Giants defense currently finds themselves in an interesting position. Just days away from the start of the season, they are in desperate need of depth at both the linebacker position and within the secondary. The departure of linebacker Blake Martinez and a lack of proven talent along the secondary could prove to be issues that plague this Giants’ defense throughout the season.

But even with certain issues within the unit, the Giants’ defense is still full of potential. Several defenders are going to find themselves in the biggest roles of their careers. This could be an opportunity for these players to show that they belong in this unit. If some of these Giants’ defenders can stay strong, this defense could be in a good position. Here are four Giants defenders who must rise to the occasion in Week 1.

4. S Xavier McKinney

Throughout the offseason, Xavier McKinney became the face of this defensive unit. He was voted as a captain for the season and will also have the red dot on his helmet. This means that he will be the defensive play-caller.

McKinney shined during his second season. After appearing in just six games as a rookie, he played in all 17 in Year 2. While on the field, McKinney was a force. He recorded 93 total tackles, one tackle for loss, 10 defended passes and five interceptions.

McKinney will now be playing a much bigger role in 2022. With the departures of Logan Ryan, Jabrill Peppers, and James Bradberry, the Giants’ secondary is lacking veteran talent. They will rely heavily on McKinney to make plays and lead the unit.

McKinney making his presence felt in Week 1 would put this defense in a good position. It would prove that the Giants are in good hands. The Tennessee Titans are no easy task. With a healthy Derrick Henry out of the backfield and a hungry Robert Woods at receiver, this defense will be in for a battle. But McKinney being a reliable figure could put people’s minds at ease.

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