After the Giants failed to generate pressure against the Dallas Cowboys, leading quarterback Dak Prescott's 405-yard passing performance in the season opener's 35-17 loss the past weekend, outside linebackers coach Mike Dawson and the New York staff hit the reset button ahead of Sunday's 1 p.m. matchup with the Buffalo Bills.
"I think everybody's looking for the same answer -- how are we going to get pressure on the quarterback?" Dawson said. "You've obviously got to make him uncomfortable, get the ball coming out faster and we've got to make him throw it under duress when he is going to throw it. And then, ultimately, we need to sack the quarterback and get there.
"So it's something that I think all the guys are hungry to get fixed, hungry to get answered. Came out and trained hard this week, so we've got to do a great job. Guys that can move, you've got to have a good aiming point, good plan on those guys and be able to get to them."
The Giants get another quarterback with mobility and a big arm as Josh Allen presents the latest challenge.
Among the players needed to step up, Dawson pointed to Markus Golden, whom the Giants signed to a one-year deal in the offseason.
Formerly a second-round pick by the Arizona Cardinals in the 2015 NFL draft, the fourth-year edge rusher's early career saw an uptick during the 2016 campaign when he set his single-season best 12.5 sacks over 16 games (three starts).
"The thing about Markus is he is a guy who's done it," Dawson said of Golden, who totaled just one tackle against the Cowboys. "He's had success and he's been in this system, so a little bit unique that way, as far as our room goes. And he's a guy that he's going to prepare extremely hard, he's got a good system as far as taking notes and reviewing, things like that, as far as what he's getting ready and prepared to do. So studying run-pass keys from offensive linemen, things like that. So the intensity, the strengths, him getting after the ball is going to be a big deal for us. He brings great energy. He's going to be running around, flying all over the place and he needs to do that and put it all together to get to the QB."
Lorenzo Carter is another body the Giants had hoped to contribute more, but the Cowboys kept the second-year outside linebacker in check as well. The 6-foot-5, 250-pounder posted four sacks over 16 games (two starts) as a rookie in 2018.
Golden and Carter are at the top of the list, but the Giants are also hoping for rookie Tuzar Skipper -- claimed off waivers Monday from the Pittsburgh Steelers -- to ignite a spark after New York head coach Pat Shurmur revealed Wednesday that veteran Kareem Martin (knee) would be out multiple weeks.
"Kareem's a big part of what's going on around here," Dawson said. "He's a guy that can do a bunch of different things and is extremely smart and knows what's going on. He makes a big impact on the other guys as well.
"We've added Skip and now he's a guy that's going to come in here, flying a million miles an hour, which is what you like to see, is a guy that's going to be coming off the edge. So we've got to get him ready to be able to come out and get ready to go."