New York Giants sign Blake Martinez: Grade, reaction and more

New York Giants

General manager Dave Gettleman is adding another piece to a defense in dire need of assistance. How can linebacker Blake Martinez help the New York Giants?

It’s a franchise that has won a total of 12 games since its last playoff appearance in 2016. The New York Giants are still under the guidance of general manager Dave Gettleman but after two seasons, the team has moved on from head coach Pat Shurmur. Enter Joe Judge and so far this offseason, the emphasis for the club has been trying to fix a defense that has struggled badly each of the past three years.

So far this month, the Giants have parted ways with linebacker Alec Ogletree, put the franchise tag on defensive tackle Leonard Williams, brought back underrated linebacker David Mayo – a positive for a club that ranked 25th in yards allowed in 2019 – and added former Carolina Panthers’ cornerback James Bradberry. Gettleman was that team’s general manager back in ’16 when the productive defensive back was a second-round selection.

Now Big Blue has signed another four-year veteran in the form of linebacker Blake Martinez, who racked up big numbers with the Green Bay Packers during his stay with the franchise.

Contract Details

NFL Network’s Mike Garafolo reported Martinez agreeing to a deal with the Giants and colleague Ian Rapoport explained that it was for three years and $30 million.

National Reaction

In 2017, Martinez led the Packers with 142 tackles and two more on special teams. He elevated that number to 144 defensive stops the following season and comes off a campaign in which he paced Matt LaFleur’s club with 155 total tackles.

So why was Green Bay 22nd in the league vs. the run in 2018 and 23rd this past year? And how did the San Francisco 49ers roll up 285 yards on the ground in the NFC title game? In their current linebacker rankings, Pro Football Focus (subscription required) doesn’t have Martinez in its Top 50 and his grade vs. the run is below average.

Despite the impressive statistics, the jury is still very much out on the former fourth-round pick from Stanford.

Grade: C+

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