Giants Anticipate Increased Role for Isaiah Simmons Leading up to Cardinals Showdown

New Giants linebacker Isaiah Simmons during warm ups. The NY Jets against the NY Giants on August 26, 2023 at MetLife Stadium in East Rutherford, NJ, as the rivals play their final preseason game before the start of the NFL season / Chris Pedota – – USA TODAY NETWORK

Isaiah Simmons holds no animosity towards the Arizona Cardinals, but there’s no denying the competitive juices will certainly be flowing when he heads back to State Farm Stadium this weekend as a member of the Giants.

Simmons, of course, spent the first three seasons of his NFL career donning the red and white but never truly found his footing. That’s why Arizona shipped him off to New York in exchange for a seventh-round pick late in the preseason.

The Clemson product appeared in just 15 snaps in the Giants’ season opener last Sunday night against the Dallas Cowboys and recorded a tackle. As expected, he was used all over the field and was handed many different assignments from defensive coordinator Wink Martindale.

With Simmons learning the playbook and getting more comfortable in the system, the defensive guru expects his role to continue to increase as the year goes on, starting this week against the Cardinals.

“His role is going to expand because he’s that good of a player and he’s just learning the package,” Martindale told reporters this week. “It’s just going to keep expanding. He’s a positionless player, which is a compliment to him.

“We can move him around and play him in different spots. Through attrition, there’s going to be different spots that are open and each week, you put him in the best spot that you need him in to help us.”

As the 25-year-old has said since the day he arrived in New York, Simmons expects to thrive and find that next level of his game within Martindale’s aggressive defense. 

“This is a really good fit for me,” he explained. “Just the way that Wink runs his system, it’s different than any other system that I’ve been in. When he says positionless defense, he truly means that.

“Learning things conceptionally knowing that where you are some weeks you may not be there next week. I think that was kind of something that stuck with me and it goes a long way because it’s kind of how I think of things.”

Simmons certainly has the attitude and the makings to be a huge weapon for this defense moving forward. As for Sunday though, he’s just focused on helping Big Blue get their first victory of the season.

“I’m not letting any external factors come in the way of what my responsibility is going to be out there Sunday,” he said. “The main goal is just to win the game and beat whoever’s across from us and this week it just so happens to be Arizona.”

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