In the NFL, you can have as many superstars as you want on your roster, but if they don’t play as a team and complement each other, it won’t matter.
It takes everyone in the locker room to sacrifice at least a little to make things work.
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New York Giants defensive coordinator Wink Martindale believes his unit has the type of selflessness that wins championships.
“I like the players, the people,’”Martindale told reporters about his defense on Wednesday at practice. “You know what I mean? The players themselves.
“It’s, like I said, I know you hear the word selfless, but it truly is a selfless group who cares about our success and that is cool in today’s day and age of the NFL. Like you got (cornerback) Adoree’ (Jackson), who is helping those young corners out. I mean, he’s a stud and he wants them to be great and I just love the people here. I think that’s what Joe and Dabs and even the prior regime, there is some good people in this building that want to do right for the Giants and do right for our defense and do right for our team most importantly.”
Jackson is a former first-round pick and a well-paid veteran who is willing to shift positions to allow the team’s two rookie studs (Deonte Banks and Tre Hawkins III) to play on the outside.
That being said, the rookies have been thrown to the lions early on this camp with mixed results. Martindale isn’t too concerned.
“I think they have failed some in practice and I loved how they responded to that,” he said. “You don’t go into it looking that way, but I think that’s one of the things that I told you before that I loved about Tre. He’s got a short memory. And Te is just one of those guys that wants to keep getting better every day, they both are and it’s fun to watch.”
The defense is also set up with many platoon-like rotations at all three levels, a concept that rarely works on teams with selfish players. Martindale was asked if he had this season’s defensive plan implemented yet.
“We got the whole defense in, yeah. Yeah, it’s already in. You are not seeing it all, but we got all the defense in,” he said.
That new defense will almost certainly feature Banks and Hawkins outside and the selfless Jackson inside.