Kareem Martin
AP Photo

New York Giants outside linebacker Kareem Martin has high hopes for the revamped defense ahead of the 2019 season.

Ryan Honey

There’s no sugarcoating it, the New York Giants pass rush needs to step up in 2019. Last season, they were tied for second-to-last in the NFL with only 30 sacks. Their leading pass-rusher, Olivier Vernon (7.0 sacks) is now a member of the Cleveland Browns. Therefore, the younger guys at the edge rusher position need to step up.

These include Lorenzo Carter, newly-acquired Markus Golden, rookie Oshane Ximines and Kareem Martin.

The latter spoke to Dan Salomone of the Giants official website about James Bettcher’s defense heading into 2019. He ultimately stated how the additions of safety Antoine Bethea and defensive lineman Olsen Pierre (who both played with Bettcher in Arizona) were beneficial moves.

“I think it’s very helpful because now you have pretty much somebody at every level who’s played in this defense,” Martin said. “I think player-to-player, that’s one of those coaching things that’s really important in a defense or offense or anything. The fact that they can lean on O.P. or Markus [Golden] or A.B. and ask a question, ‘Hey, when you guys played this defense in the past, could you do it this way?’ I think that’s really big and is going to pay off for us.”

Martin, who also played in Arizona with Bettcher as his defensive coordinator, was teammates with Golden and Pierre from 2015-2017 with the Cardinals. That being said, Martin knows what Golden can bring to the table and how he could succeed in Bettcher’s system.

“Markus Golden, when he gets on the field, he’s going to bring a lot of energy,” Martin said. “He’s going to give it his all. That’s one thing I know about him, and O.P. is the same way. His quickness in the inside, he’s probably one of the quickest three-techniques I’ve had a chance to play with. I’m just excited to see all of them play.”

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