The New York Giants still need defensive line depth, even after agreeing a deal with free agent Rakeem Nunez-Roches on Monday, March 13. If general manager Joe Schoen continues searching the market for help up front, he won’t find a better option than Calais Campbell, especially since the Giants have a close “connection” to the six-time Pro-Bowler.
Campbell was released by the Baltimore Ravens on Monday, and ESPN’s Jordan Raanan retweeted the statement from GM Eric DeCosta, along with this note: “Campbell’s connection to Giants DC Wink Martindale should not be ignored.”
As Raanan noted, the presence of Don ‘Wink’ Martindale gives the Giants a strong chance to sign Campbell. Martindale took over stewardship of the Giants’ defense last season, following four years calling plays for Baltimore’s D’.
Campbell earned his sixth invite to the Pro Bowl on Martindale’s watch in 2020, and the 36-year-old defensive tackle believes he still has enough left in the tank to make an impact for a new team this year.
Giants Should Be at Front of the Queue for Dominant ‘Beast’
He may have endured 15 seasons in the pros, but Campbell is convinced he still has a lot left to offer. A text sent to CBS Sports’ Josina Anderson confirmed that belief, with Campbell promising “some team is gonna get a beast out there.”
That’s no empty claim since Campbell has 100 sacks and 57 pass breakups on his CV. He’s also remained a destructive force against the run.
Campbell’s numbers with the Ravens in 2022 were still more than respectable, when he managed to notch 5.5 sacks, along with 15 pressures, eight quarterback knockdowns and 14 QB hits, per Pro Football Reference. No. 93 also helped himself to four tackles for loss, as well as making 3.5 run stuffs, according to ESPN.
Campbell showed off his prowess for wrecking running plays at source with this stop against the New England Patriots from Week 3 last season, highlighted by Spencer N. Schultz of SB Nation’s Baltimore Beatdown:
The Giants need an active big body to fill rushing lanes after surrendering 5.2 yards per attempt in 2022, the second-most in the NFL. Putting Campbell on the same line as Leonard Williams and All-Pro Dexter Lawrence II would give the Giants arguably the most physically imposing front three in football.
Giants Should Keep Adding to Team Strength
Martindale’s defensive front has already been given an infusion of fresh talent after the Giants agreed a three-year contract with Nunez-Roches, per SiriusXM NFL Radio’s Adam Caplan:
Former Tampa Bay Buccaneers Super Bowl winner Nunez-Roches is a solid pro who can play either defensive end or nose tackle. Yet, the 29-year-old won’t take over a game and wreck the line of scrimmage the way Campbell can.
His game-wrecking talents extend to special teams, where Campbell has set an NFL record for blocking field goals, per Ravens.com Editorial Director Ryan Mink:
Campbell’s ability to consistently impact two of the game’s three phases makes him worth an investment, despite his advancing years. His dead cap figure is calculated at $2.44 million by Spotrac.com, but the Giants should find room for a team-friendly, short-term contract.
DeCosta hasn’t “closed the door” on Campbell returning to M&T Bank Stadium, so Schoen shouldn’t wait to add a legitimate marquee talent to a position group still in need of reinforcements.