After spending last season with the Jacksonville Jaguars, cornerback Aaron Ross makes his return with the New York Giants, the team that took the former Texas standout with the No. 20 overall selection in the 2007 NFL draft. The Jaguars’ defense was nothing short of abysmal in 2012, finishing in the bottom third in both run and pass defense. Ross couldn’t put his finger on the root of Jacksonville’s struggles last year.
“It was just one of those years that we just didn’t click,” Ross stated. “The defense didn’t really quite come together. “
Four days after the Jaguars released him, Ross signed with the Giants on March 12. The veteran cornerback spent four seasons (2007-2011) with Big Blue capturing two Super Bowl trophies and is thrilled to be a Giant once again.
“It feels great to be back,” admitted Ross. “I’m happy with it, but I know I can get better each day. I feel very comfortable out here. Feels like I’m refreshed and I’m happy here. It feels like a huge load is off me.”
New York’s ferocious defensive line paved the way for two stellar championship runs in 2007 and 2011, so Ross sees a lot of similarities between this year’s group and those Super Bowl winning squads.
“We’re loaded,” said Ross of the Giants’ defensive line. “It seems like anybody that you put in from the defensive tackles to the defensive ends. Tracy he’s coming along. Tuck and them are already proven, but when you see the young guys come in and seem there’s not a drop off then that’s something to look forward to. They can go 100 miles per hour and know they can take a play or two off and there’s not a huge drop off from their performance.”
In 2012, it was a completely different story for Big Blue as the secondary was exposed after its defensive line was ravaged by nagging injuries and plagued by inconsistent play. With veteran Justin Tuck back healthy, Jason Pierre-Paul progressing from offseason back surgery and a plethora of quality depth across the roster, Ross understands how disruption upfront can alleviate pressure on the team’s defensive backs.
“Huge,” said Ross on the importance of a good defensive line.” All I have to do is cover for three or four seconds and I know if I can do that, then we’ll get the quarterback scrambling or get him on the ground, so it’s huge for our secondary.”
Rick Laughland covers the New York Jets for Greenandwhitereport.com
You can follow him on Twitter @rlaughland
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