Excerpt: "We continue our series of positional reviews for the New York Giants today by turning to the defense for the first time. We will begin our look back at the 2012 defense and a look ahead to how the 2013 Giants' defense might be different by starting at the defensive tackle position.
We have already discussed the Giants' defense quite a bit since the 2012 season ended, and one of the themes has been that the run defense just has not been good enough. In 2012 the Giants surrendered 4.6 yards per rushing attempt, 26th in the league and not nearly good enough. In 2011 the average per rushing attempt against the Giants' defense was similarly awful -- 4.5 yards per attempt.
How much of the blame for that inadequate run defense falls on the defensive tackles? My belief is there are bigger issues at linebacker and sometimes with the run support from the defensive end position, but the tackles can't be blameless. Let's look at the players who comprised the Giants' defensive tackle rotation in 2012 -- and, yes, we need to go into this understanding that the Giants at times use defensive ends Justin Tuck, Jason Pierre-Paul and Mathias Kiwanuka inside in place of their tackles.
Linval Joseph -- The three-year veteran out of East Carolina has emerged as an excellent defensive tackle. He had 59 tackles, five for loss, and four quarterback sacks in 2012. He had a Pro Football Focus score of +6.3. PFF credited Joseph with 28 stops -- plays resulting in an offensive failure -- in 2012, and only seven defensive tackles made more. Joseph is a good player, but at this point not a dominant, Pro Bowl-caliber player. Maybe in 2013 he takes that step.
Chris Canty -- Still a very good player, but after eight years in the league one with questionable knees. He played well for the Giants 2012 with three sacks and five tackles for loss, but played in only nine games. He compiled a +6.6 PFF grade in his limited playing time.
Rocky Bernard -- Started off well in 2012, missed a few games with an injury, and was never really the same. The 33-year-old Bernard has been in the league for 10 years and is little more at this point than rotational depth." Read more...