Defensive Coordinator Wink Martindale
Martindale: What a great win it was Sunday. The resiliency that we played with defensively, I was so proud of those guys. I was really proud of the fans too because that place got loud. I keep saying every week how much that helps us as a defense, and it surely did there in the fourth quarter against the Ravens. With that, I'll open it up to questions.
Q: Can you admit now that it had a little extra meaning to you?
A: I still was glad to see everybody because of the relationships we built over the last 10 years. Like I said, you can't deny if you're competitive, you want to beat the last place you're at. How I explained it to you guys, I spoke from the heart, and I told you exactly how I felt going into it and that's how I felt afterwards. It was great to see (Ravens quarterback) Lamar (Jackson) and not talk to him about football, but just to see how he's doing and things like that. So, it was a lot of fun, especially the way it turned out.
Q: You had 10 men on the touchdown, what's the issue there?
A: I think it's all part of building this thing. It's communication through all of us and we're all responsible for it. We've just got to continue to work on our substitutions during the game. Sometimes they're bang-bang situations that guys got to be locked in and hear it.
Q: What have you seen from (Jaguars quarterback) Trevor Lawrence? It seems like he's different than he was last year.
A: I think that it's a perfect marriage between he and (Jaguars head coach) Doug (Pederson) and Mike McCoy, the quarterback coach. Doug has always had a good quarterback and they always play well with his offense. It's pretty cool to see just because of how much I respect Doug and Trevor because he was the first player taken in the draft. You know he has talent.
Q: You guys are underdogs in this game, how much do you sense that your unit views themselves in that role, as underdogs?
A: I've always considered myself an underdog. You'd have to ask them individually as players. I like coaching life that way because when you're the underdog you always try to keep that edge to you going into any competition or anything like that. I think that whoever sets the line, sets the line. I don't know what's happening with it.
Q: I just meant more like big picture for the season. Do your guys look at the expectations set on the outside?
A: We really don't. It's one of those things where each week we're approaching it the same way. I told you all before you empty your tank on Sundays, what (head coach Brian Daboll) Dabs talks to the whole team about, and we fill it up during the week. They have done that. We've tried to stay as consistent as we can be every day, and I think that's really helped us. The competitive stamina that this group has and resiliency and the culture that Dabs and (general manager) Joe (Schoen) have built, it's been a lot of fun to work here.
Q: For a while, we went through a phase where rookie quarterbacks were taking the league by storm. Lamar was one of them. Has that abated a little bit? Trevor Lawrence came in as one of the best prospects most people can remember, and he struggled.
A: I think there are a multitude of things that go into a player struggling. You can fill in the blank spaces there anyway you want, but I think it's a good marriage between he and Doug and that offense. And you can really see that he is playing with some confidence. The first part of your question, I think there are a lot of really good, young quarterbacks in this league. The future is very exciting in the National Football League.
Q: Maybe I'm crazy, but before the season, I thought, 'If the Giants are going to blitz this much, they're probably going to force a lot of bad throws that get intercepted, and the flip side is that they'll probably get beat over the top a couple of times in man coverage.' Neither one of those things has happened. You guys got your first interception, and you haven't gotten beat deep. Why?
A: Give credit to (defensive backs coach) Jerome (Henderson) and (assistant defensive backs coach) Mike Treier and the secondary. They've really played well fundamentally and used all the techniques that they work on together, and it's like I said, Jerome – I can't say enough good things about Jerome. The blitzing part, we play each game different. And just that's where the stats are at right now. I'm not going to call them unless I think they're going to hit. A lot of times, too, you can't look at just the different statistical categories because each game you're trying to do something to make them play left-handed. We knew last week, for example, that it was going to come down to the fourth quarter and you needed to save some things for the fourth quarter to win the game. And all the players were right on board with it. They knew the plan going into it, and they executed it.
Q: When you play a younger quarterback like Trevor, how much do you enjoy blitzing? Do you relish the opportunity to go up against a guy who hasn't seen too much of your stuff before? He doesn't have the experience to fall back on.
A: I don't really look at it that way. Monday night is when we have our mayhem meetings. Me and (outside linebackers coach) Drew (Wilkins) and Jerome and (defensive assistant) Kevin (Wilkins). And we study protections, and we just try to give them different looks that they haven't seen. Like I said before, (Jacksonville Jaguars head coach) Doug Pederson, he's gone against us plenty of times. So, I'm sure he'll have a plan for it. We'll just see who can outexecute who.
Q: (Defensive lineman) Dexter (Lawrence) has played 90 percent of snaps the last three games, I think. Is that a concern at all, or what's he showing you?
A: He's in great shape right now. It does concern you for the 17-game schedule, so we're going to try to find spots to spot him some reps. But when he's playing as well as he is, it's so hard to –. It's like if you had a Rolls-Royce, wouldn't you want to drive it everywhere? It's just, he's playing really well. And he wants to go back in. We're going to try to peel back on some of those reps if we can; it always depends on where we're at in a game.
Q: I was just going to follow up on that: what he's shown you the last three games? He's doing so well.
A: He's the player that we thought he would be. He's using his length. He's using his power. He's converting from the run game to pass rush on play-action pass. He's being the force that we thought he would be.
Q: You mentioned coming up with things they haven't seen before. Where did you come up with the – I don't even know how to describe it. (It was the play) where the three guys were stacked above the center. It was like a defensive eye formation with Dexter Lawrence, (outside linebacker) Oshane (Ximines). You know the play I'm talking about?
A: Yeah, like a bunch. Yeah. That's part of our Monday meeting. We look at their protections – each team differently – and we just knew that would give them a hard time sorting that out the way we did it. Our guys did a great job of executing, like that bunch formation you talked about in the middle. That's always fun when they get to do things like that.
Q: Have you used that before somewhere?
A: I think I used that back at Western Illinois (laughs). 1999.
Q: I'll get the tape.
A: That was versus an option team.
Q: What do you call it? Do have a name?
A: Yeah, but I don't want to name anybody else to know it.