New York Giants' LB Corp Proving Their Worth

Pro Football NYCSenior Writer IAugust 21, 2009

MINNEAPOLIS - DECEMBER 28:   Quarterback Tarvaris Jackson #7 of the Minnesota Vikings is hit by Bryan Kehl #53 of the New York Giants on December 28, 2008 at the Hubert H. Humphrey Metrodome in Minneapolis, Minnesota. (Photo by Elsa/Getty Images)

Kehl, Wilkinson, Sintim All Playing Well

Outside of Wide Receiver, Linebacker was considered a question mark going into camp.  As the days pass, the questions are being answered one by one.

In the absence of injured free-agent OLB Michael Boley, Bryan Kehl and Gerris Wilkinson have filled in more than adequately at weak-side linebacker.  Kehl has shown a fire that was not apparent in his game a year ago as a rookie and Wilkinson, who was on the edge of the roster bubble at the outset of camp, has impressed the coaches with his quickness and intelligent play.

“I’m just excited about watching his continued growth,” Head Coach Tom Coughlin said of Wilkinson.

Kehl is still ahead of Wilkinson at this point, but Wilkinson is closing fast. Boley, who will not be able to practice for a few more weeks and is suspended for Week 1, is way behind in claiming his new job. The play of the existing players on the roster makes one question why he was signed at all.

Rookie Clint Sintim made a name for himself immediately in the first preseason game vs. Carolina.  Considering he comes from a 3-4 defensive scheme at Virginia, he has picked up the 4-3 almost immediately.  His pass-rushing prowess caught the eye of everyone and evoked praise from ESPN analyst Jon Gruden, who was unaware of who Sintim was.

Even though Sintim played like a dynamo against the pass, Coughlin told reporters that Sintim was more than just a pass-rusher, pointing out his ability to play the run.

“We think he is going to be a powerful guy against the run. We think he’s got good leverage. I think it’s just a matter of him lining up there next time.”