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Wink Martindale — Tae Banks is ‘everything you want in a corner’

Giants’ defensive coordinator explains jubilant reaction when team drafted the Maryland cornerback

New York Giants v Minnesota Vikings Photo by Stephen Maturen/Getty Images

New York Giants fans remember Wink Martindale’s reaction when general manager Joe Schoen traded up to select cornerback Deonte Banks at No. 24 in the 2023 NFL Draft.

Martindale almost broke Schoen in half.

Why was the Giants’ defensive coordinator so pumped up by the addition of Banks? Here is what he told Bob Papa during a recent ‘Giants Huddle’ podcast:

“I just think he’s everything you want in a corner,” Martindale said. “Starting off with he’s tough and he can tackle.

“He like to play press coverage and he likes to be on the island out there, he likes the challenge of it and you can see he’s that way here. Very humble kid.”

Martindale chatted with Papa about a few other topics in a show that lasted only a bit more than seven minutes. Here are a couple of other noteworthy topics.

The return of linebacker Darrian Beavers

A sixth-round pick in 2022, Beavers appeared to be on the verge of earning a significant role on defense before suffering a season-ending torn ACL during the preseason. He is back on the field during OTAs. Can he pick up where left off?

“I think that what you liked about him was his physicality,” Martindale said. “He was different than others out there. That’s what jumped out at me.”

On Kayvon Thibodeaux’s expected growth in Year 2

As our Rivka Boord wrote earlier on Tuesday, Thibodeaux did a lot of good things as a rookie. The 2022 No. 5 overall pick, though, has a long way to go to be considered a dominant edge defender.

“I love the kid,” Martindale said. “He has no ceiling. I believe that. He can do whatever he puts his mind to.”

Martindale sent Thibodeaux into the offseason with specific goals.

“After the season was over with I said I think you need to get stronger in your legs and your core,” Martindale said. “That was his focus in the offseason ... he’s going to get better and better every game that he plays here.”