Team DL LB DB Total
1. Dallas Cowboys 5 1 6 12
1. Green Bay Packers 6 4 2 12
3. San Diego Chargers 4 2 7 13
4. NE Patriots 2 8 4 14
5. Indianapolis Colts 11 6 1 18
5. Seattle Seahawks 8 5 5 18
7. Pittsburgh Steelers 9 3 8 20
8. Tennessee Titans 3 7 11 21
9. New York Giants 1 10 12 23
10. TB Buccaneers 12 9 3 24
11. Jcksnville Jaguars 7 11 9 27
12. Wshngtn Redskins 10 12 10 30
Scouts Inc. ranked the best team 1 thru worst team 12. While the Giants defensive line was given a flattering recognition for tops rating, the LBs and Secondary were given weak ratings. What does this all mean? It means that the Giants defense needs young players like Ross and Wilkinson to step up, and it also means that whether we want to acknowledge it or not, Manning has to show up every playoff game because the defense will not be able to win it on its own.
Note also the lack of respect for the TB defensive line and respect for their secondary. The Giants need to pound the ball all day Sunday and set up playaction for Manning.
Scouts Inc. remarks on individual units:
DL: The New York defense started to gel during a Week 3 win over division rival Washington, and the Giants haven’t looked back. They lead the league with 53 sacks, thanks in large part to the trio of DEs Osi Umenyiora, Michael Strahan and Justin Tuck. The overall talent of the group makes it hard for opposing offensive lines to concentrate on a single player. Many offensive coordinators have to adjust their protections and keep extra blockers in to counter this outstanding defensive unit. This front four also is stout against the run, yielding only 97.7 yards per game.
LB: The Giants are led by slightly undersized MLB Antonio Pierce, who can struggle when taking on blockers but knows how to get to the ballcarrier and is extremely active. WLB Kawika Mitchell moved from the inside to the outside when he arrived from Kansas City, and it is a more natural position for him. He is more effective going forward than he is dropping into space, but like SLB Reggie Torbor, he lacks premier instincts and technique.
DB: There is some young talent in the Giants’ secondary, but overall, this area is a weakness for New York. The secondary would be exposed further were it not for the Giants’ outstanding pass rush. First-round CB Aaron Ross looks like a keeper and is a great blend of size, toughness and speed. More seasoning, specifically in the playoffs, should do him a lot of good.