Blake Martinez is one of the guys with the most to prove during the 2022 season. The New York Giants linebacker is returning from a torn ACL injury and wants to show the league that he can still be a useful player on defense, especially after he took a pay cut to remain with the franchise for this season.
Martinez moved from the Green Bay Packers to the Giants in the 2020 season, following his exasperated exhibition in the NFC Championship Game, when he was exploited over and over again by Kyle Shanahan's rushing offense and had a dismal night trying to stop Raheem Mostert.
He got a nice contract from the New York team though, as Dave Gettleman believed that he could've become a star in Patrick Graham's defense. To be fair, Martinez was a useful linebacker in his first year with the team, making a lot of plays and displaying some good traits on coverage; his 2021 season was cut short, however, after he suffered a major knee injury in Week 3 that ended his season prematurely and made him an afterthought on defense. Had Martinez refused to take the pay cut, he would surely be released by the new regime.
The goal for Martinez is to get back to where he was before: a tackling machine with not much athletic ability but really intelligent in the middle of the field. If he's slow returning from injury, though, you can be sure he's not going to be a New York Giant in 2023.