On NFL Network earlier this offseason, Osi Umenyiora was talking about the Giants’ disappointing season on defense last year, and the lack of pressure generated on opposing QBs. Umenyiora said that a major factor was that they weren’t able to stop the run effectively, and when you can’t stop the run, it makes it that much harder to get to the QB. He’s right. Last season, the Giants held opposing offenses to less than 125 rushing yards 7 times. They went 6-1 in those games. They went 3-6 in games they allowed more than 125. (See the graph to the right)
The Giants know they stunk against the run and they’re doing something about it. A few weeks ago they signed a pair of veteran DT’s in pass rushing Cullen Jenkins and run stuffing Mike Patterson. I like to refer to those guys as “short term depth.” The two former Eagles join Linval Joseph, and now the Giants add another young run stuffer in Johnathan Hankins. That will give the Giants four good DTs, a position where they were extremely thin at just a couple of months ago.
Shaun Rogers is still on the roster, as is Marcus Kuhn, and I suspect they’ll be battling it out for a roster spot. I can’t help but wonder if this is the end of disappointing Marvin Austin’s run with the Giants.