The New York Giants might be lacking at several positions but their interior defensive line is not one of them.
Already strong thanks to the presence of All-Pro Dexter Lawrence and Leonard Williams, the Giants beefed up at the position this offseason, adding run defenders A’Shawn Robinson and Rakeem Nunez-Roches. They also selected the massive Jordon Riley in the 2023 NFL draft.
Given their top-end talent combined with the newly-added depth, it should come as little surprise that Jeff Kerr of CBS Sports has ranked the Giants’ interior defenders as one of the NFL’s best defensive position groups.
Hard to find a batter tandem last season than Dexter Lawrence and Leonard Williams, two defensive tackles who anchored the Giants’ turnaround on that side of the ball.
Lawrence had a monster season at defensive tackle, recording 68 tackles, 7.5 sacks, and two forced fumbles. His impact came when getting to the quarterback, with 63 pressures, 28 quarterback hits, and a 12.9% pressure rate (only Chris Jones had more pressures and quarterback hits at defensive tackle).
Williams is coming off a year which he had 45 tackles, 2.5 sacks, 33 pressures, and a forced fumble. He did battle a neck injury last season and ended up missing five games, the first time he’s missed any games in his career. Regardless, Williams is still a force to be reckoned with in the A-gap and B-gap (he does switch to the edge on certain formations).
A’Shawn Robinson is also part of this rotation, but Williams and Lawrence are the two that makes the defensive interior elite.
Although the Giants’ interior D-line ranked in the top 10, they were actually second at the position behind the San Francisco 49ers. Kerr gave that unit a slight advantage.