Giants DT Joseph off to a strong start

New York Giants coach Tom Coughlin is hoping that second-round draft pick Linval Joseph out of East Carolina will have an immediate impact in 2010. He was impressed over the weekend that Joseph continued to encourage teammates even while he struggled to get his breath during a minicamp session.

Joseph's former coach at East Carolina, Skip Holtz, has been effusive in his praise for the player. Some teams thought that Joseph was a little raw to be taken that early in the second round, but so far he's been pretty impressive.

"Probably one of the most mature young men I’ve ever had the opportunity to coach, and I’ve had the opportunity to coach some good players,” Holtz told the Star-Ledger last week. “Linval is very serious; he’s very committed. He’s the type of guy that, in college, you give the whole team three days off and any one of those three days you go down to the training room and he’s down there, in the hot tub or lifting or stretching."

Added Coughlin this past weekend: "He is a big load that can run."

In 2007, the Giants had a rotation at defensive tackle that wore opposing teams down and collapsed the pocket. They could move defensive end Justin Tuck inside and create even more chaos. Last season, the Giants were manhandled at the line of scrimmage, and they've vowed not to let it happen again.

Jason Pierre-Paul is certainly an immense talent at defensive end, but I'm starting to think Joseph will have a more immediate impact.