New York Giants Make Two Solid Moves for Their Defense
Jan 8, 2017; Green Bay, WI, USA; New York Giants linebacker Keenan Robinson before the NFC Wild Card playoff football game against the Green Bay Packers at Lambeau Field. Mandatory Credit: Adam Wesley/Green Bay Press Gazette via USA TODAY Sports

New York Giants‘ Jerry Reese continued his stellar offseason by re-signing starting LB Keenan Robinson and adding CB Valentino Blake.

Jerry Reese was burning the midnight oil Monday night, making two moves to better his defense in the late evening. The New York Giants re-signed last year’s starting linebacker Keenan Robinson while adding some veteran depth in cornerback Valentino Blake.

Robinson will return to Big Blue following visits with the Cincinnati Bengals and Buffalo Bills. The deal is a reported one-year pact worth up to $4 million, a solid value for the team considering how much Robinson did for them during his first season with the Giants.

He posted 83 total tackles for the Giants in 2016, but his biggest contribution came in pass coverage. The 27-year old notched seven passes defended and finished with a solid Pro Football Focus coverage grade of 76.5. That mark put Robinson as the team’s best linebacker in coverage.

His re-signing now leaves defensive tackle Johnathan Hankins as the lone outstanding key member of last 2016’s defense unit still without a contract.

Meanwhile, Blake is a 26-year old cornerback who spent last season with the Tennessee Titans. He registered a modest 46 tackles and five passes defended but had a career year during his 2015 campaign with the Pittsburgh Steelers.

That season Blake started all 18 regular-season and postseason games, putting up career highs in tackles (76), interceptions (two), interception return yards (112), and passes defended.

Blake is also a standout special teamer with 38 career special teams tackles over five seasons to his name. His signing comes on the heels of the Steelers signing away Giants’ cornerback Coty Sensabaugh.

Though details of Blake’s contract have not yet been released, it’s an excellent depth signing by Reese. He replaces the loss of Sensabaugh with an arguably more talented player with a lot better upside. That, combined with the re-signing of Robinson, make for an excellent day for the Giants’ general manager.

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