Giants head coach Pat Shurmur wants to move on from the trades of CB Eli Apple and DT Damon "Snacks" Harrison that went down on Wednesday.
Why? Shurmur understands the business side of football, and like any head coach, he'd rather not lose sleep over things out of his control.
"We traded two players, and we're moving on," Shurmur said during his Wednesday press conference. "In our mind, we've got some guys that we feel like can step in and fill in."
One of those players is sophomore DT Dalvin Tomlinson, who will see an increase in reps with Harrison on his way to the Lions. Tomlinson, the Giants' second-round pick a season ago, has started next to Snacks in all seven games this year, totaling 21 combined tackles. In fact, with Harrison gone, Tomlinson owns the longest consecutive start streak on the team.
That streak will definitely continue as Shurmur believes Tomlinson will return to a more natural position lining up over the center. He hopes that change will result in more production from No. 94.
"He's probably a natural nose guard, so this would put him back in that position full time," Shurmur explained. "We're looking forward to seeing him do good things."
Tomlinson said he spoke to Harrison "briefly" as he made his final rounds in the Giants' facility. However, the 24-year-old isn't focused too much on his new opportunity to fill in the void, as he exudes the same amount of energy in every game and every play no matter what.
"Wherever they want to put me, I'm excited for it, to go out there and ball out and step up my game," Tomlinson said.
Many are viewing the Giants trading away two of their best defensive players as surrendering for the year. But Tomlinson shook his head at that question when asked if it was true.
"We have great players in every position across the locker room," he said. "It's the NFL, they have to be great to play in it and we're not giving up. We're all hungry out here and just want to make sure we prepare right and get this win."
The Giants technically are still in the hunt as their Week 8 matchup against the Redskins approaches. They are only 3 1/2 games out of the first-place lead in the NFC East, which is held by Washington. Unless their level of play changes on both sides of the ball, the term "rebuilding" will become more apparent by the week.
But,as the Giants try desperately to come out with a win on Sunday, it will feel different for Tomlinson when he grips the turf for the first defensive snap at MetLife Stadium without Harrison on his side in the trenches.
"Snacks is a great guy," he said. "I've learned a lot from him on and off the field. He's just a great role model. It's going to be slightly different not playing next to him, I feel like, but like I said, it's the nature of the game and I have to get used to it and we have other guys I'm used to playing next to also. We just have to keep improving."