Linebacker Blake Martinez
August 11, 2021
Q: You started your career at a place where they had a pretty legendary home field advantage. How can the Giants bring that kind of advantage here to New Jersey?
A: Yeah, obviously, Green Bay was an awesome franchise, but this place is just as historic and I've heard nothing but positive things about the fans. I'm just excited to get out there today and see everybody out there wearing their jerseys screaming and yelling. It's going to be special.
Q: Was there a sense at Lambeau that there was an advantage?
A: I think every single team has a kind of home field advantage to it. I think it all depends on the kind of ebbs and flows of the game. If you're out there dominating, scoring a lot of points, holding teams to very few points, the fans are going to back you and they're going to kind of make that homefield advantage that much more.
Q: If you look at the defense thus far versus last year, do you see any different characteristics, qualities, difference in speed or physicality? I just was curious what you thought of this group.
A: Obviously, last year was last year. This is a new year, new group, new guys, kind of new chemistry, and things like that. Overall, I can kind of just speak for this training camp, what I've been a part of throughout these practices and things like that. This group has a lot of potential, but it's all about us putting that work in every single day, working together, becoming a full unit, all working in unison, making all the checks, be in the right position, making plays.
Q: When you look at this team, nothing is set in stone anywhere really, but there's a lot of places and positions where you can figure out what's going on -- probably not so with linebackers and inside linebackers, other than you. Is it disconcerting or do you see it as a big competition as far as who's going to be lining up next to you snap-to-snap once the season starts?
A: No, I think it's competition every day. It's something I can't go out there and be like, ‘Oh, I’m starting.’ It’s something you want to work at every single day to get better, you have to keep improving. (Head) Coach (Joe) Judge talks about it all the time, we don't have starters, you have to earn it. That’s the thing no matter what, I go out there every day and say, ‘Hey, I'm going to be the guy out there.’ It's not, ‘Hey, I'm already the guy.’ Throughout the group, I think we all have that kind of same thought process, and put in the work every single day, and are making each other better. It’s an ‘iron sharpens iron’ type of thing.
Q: Now, if some crazy thing happens in the world and you actually start, the guy next to you inside -- I mean, there's a bunch of guys you're sorting through, older guys and younger guys. What's your sense on that competition and how strong that position next to you can be?
A: No, I think it's extremely strong. I think we have a lot of guys across the board -- (Linebacker) Devante (Downs), (Linebacker) Reggie (Ragland), (Linebacker) Tae (Crowder), the list goes on. It's just those types of guys coming into work every single day, understanding situations, understanding their job responsibilities, their athletic skill set, all those types of things. It’s going to make for an awesome training camp. Like I said, iron sharpens iron and I think each and every one of us, whoever ends up out there for week one, is going to be ready to go.
Q: Coach said the other day that when (Running Back) Saquon (Barkley) started to practice in some of the drills, he sort of assigned you to Saquon to sort of shadow him. It's really a kind of a two-part question. What's involved in that for you? And, did you kind of take that as a sign of respect that he would give you that responsibility?
A: No, for sure. I think last year every single time we did things, it was always me and Saquon. Every single time he came up for a certain competition drill, and things like that, I made sure I was right there. It kind of goes back to saying it again, the iron sharpens iron type of thing. Also, with Saquon coming back with his injury, and things like that, I think the coach trusts me. He knows that we're going to get the work in needed, but no kind of funny business, or something out of control, is going to happen during those drills.