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Wink Martindale protege won’t follow him to Ann Arbor

Drew Wilkins joins New England Patriots’ coaching staff

New York Giants Training Camp
Drew Wilkins
Photo by Rich Schultz/Getty Images

In an interesting footnote to the Brian Daboll-Wink Martindale drama that led to Martindale’s departure from the New York Giants’ coaching staff, former Giants’ outside linebackers coach Drew Wilkins will not follow Martindale to the Michigan Wolverines, where he has been named defensive coordinator.

Per Ian Rapoport, Wilkins is the new outside linebackers coach for the New England Patriots, joining first-year head coach Jerod Mayo’s staff.

Wilkins and his brother, Kevin, former assistant outside linebackers coach for the Giants, were at the center of the storm between Daboll and Martindale.

Just hours after Daboll had said he wanted and expected Martindale to return for a third season as the Giants’ defensive coordinator, news broke that the head coach had fired the Wilkins’ brothers, who were close Martindale allies.

That reportedly infuriated Martindale, and within a couple of days the Giants and Martindale had gone their separate ways.

Wilkins was an assistant coach with the Baltimore Ravens from 2010 until 2021, rising from a video intern to outside linebackers coach. Martindale was in Baltimore from 2012-2021, serving as defensive coordinator from 2018-2021. When Martindale became Giants’ defensive coordinator, Wilkins followed him.

Now, the two have chosen different paths.