The Cardinals could not figure out how to best use Isaiah Simmons after three-plus years. So now the Giants will try after shipping a seventh-round pick out west for the embattled defender, who was the No. 8 pick in the 2020 NFL draft.
Simmons, a Clemson product, was hailed as a “unicorn” when he entered the league due to his immense physical talents. But he struggled to gain much traction at linebacker and his shift to safety this preseason had not gone particularly well.
At that point why even run across the field if you’re not going to do anything to stop the TD??? I’m done with this effort by Isaiah Simmons pic.twitter.com/hFAv4sZfyR
— Cardinals Update (@updatecardinals) August 20, 2023
None of that matters, though, if Giants defensive coordinator Wink Martindale can harness what Simmons does well. And it sounds like he will be deployed at inside linebacker, an area of need.
It is a no-risk, high-reward move for general manager Joe Schoen. He gave away nothing for Simmons and the Cardinals had already declined his fifth-year option. If Martindale can turn his career around, the Giants look brilliant. If that does not happen, they move on.
It is the type of deal that makes sense for a team that is trying to win now, but does not want to overextend itself to fix glaring weaknesses as it sticks to a steady rebuild plan. You have to be somewhat skeptical given how quickly the new Cardinals regime bailed on Simmons. But you never know. It might work out for the Giants.
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