Giants Player Profile | Dalvin Tomlinson, DL
Defensive tackle Dalvin Tomlinson kept up his streak of durability and consistent improvement in 2019. Since being drafted by the Giants in the second round of the 2017 draft, Tomlinson has gone on to start all 48 games for the Giants.
The 2019 season was Tomlinson's best yet. He racked up career-highs in tackles for loss (7), quarterback hits (9), and sacks (3.5) en route to being the Giants' highest-graded defensive player by Pro Football Focus (78.1).
Tomlinson's impressive year was also the 11th best by a defensive tackle in the NFL in 2019 and was his third consecutive season grading above 78 overall.
The Giants benefitted from Tomlinson's statistics, but he was a key veteran presence on a defensive line unit that became a team strength as the season progressed.
The 25-year-old Tomlinson is the longest-tenured Giant on the Giants' defensive line in 2019 and helped lead the unit to a strong finish after defensive tackle Leonard Williams was acquired via trade from the Jets.
After the trade, the defensive line trio of Tomlinson, Williams, and rookie Dexter Lawrence combined for 82 run defense stops of zero or negative yards. Tomlinson led the way with 29 tackles in the final eight games, with his best game coming in Week 10 against the Jets with nine tackles and a sack.
Tomlinson is going into a contract year in 2020, and if his first three years are any indication, he is in for a big payday in 2021.
If Tomlinson's durability and improvement carry over into 2020, he will be one of the Giants' best defensive players and a vital presence in what could be a team strength.
The Giants will be returning their entire core of defensive linemen from last season. Tomlinson will likely see a return to the nose tackle position under new defensive coordinator Patrick Graham.
Tomlinson's ability to overpower centers will be vital in the Giants' efforts at containing runs up the middle. His dominance as a bull rusher against one-on-one blocks will service the rest of the defense as well.
Offenses will have to double-team Tomlinson with frequency, which still is no guarantee to stop the 6-foot-3, 320-pound former wrestler. Tomlinson has proven capable of holding his own against double teams and even has the ability to split the blockers to make plays in the backfield.
Even if Tomlinson is eating up double teams, it will open up other opportunities for the rest of the Giants' talented defensive line.
Tomlinson could, however, drive up his sack and quarterback pressure numbers by making some improvements to his transition from run defense to pass rush. When Tomlinson bursts off the line anticipating a run play and it turns out to be pass, he doesn't change his momentum or technique and gets caught in a prolonged battle with blockers instead of detaching from them.