Giants linebacker Devon Kennard said he hopes New York's defense can maintain its high energy a year after giving up the second fewest points in the league.
"I want to see us set the tempo from ground zero, and that's me personally," Kennard said. "If safeties and linebackers are communicating well, and we are getting the things that we need to to the D-line, from a linebacker perspective, I think it starts there. If we are doing that and being physical, I like where we are headed."
The Giants bring back a strong defensive core with a defensive line that features Jason Pierre-Paul, Damon Harrison and Olivier Vernon; linebackers Kennard and Jonathan Casillas; and a secondary of Eli Apple, Janoris Jenkins, Landon Collins and Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie. By retaining so many defenders, Kennard said the team's familiarity with the system and each other can only help moving forward.
"We already know so much about the defense, so now we can get into the little details and nuances that maybe a year or two ago we weren't able to hit the same way because there were so many guys trying to learn the defense," said Kennard, who recorded 61 combined tackles, one sack, one forced fumble and one fumble recovery while playing all 16 games last season.