Usually when a player starts in the third preseason game, unless there’s an injury, you end up starting during the regular season. Chase Blackburn was the starting middle linebacker in last night’s game for the New York Giants.
Now the question is will he be come September 5th?
There’s no question that Blackburn helped change the fortunes of the defense when the Giants brought him back before their regular season game against the defending Super Bowl champion Green Bay Packers. Blackburn helped stabilize a part of the defense that really struggled up the middle and made some huge plays along their run to the Super Bowl.
Linebacker is one of the spots on defense that was really up for grabs. Michael Boley is really the only one who was guaranteed a starting spot. Keith Rivers, who would come over in a trade with the Cincinnati Bengals, looks like he’ll spell everyone at each position.
Matthias Kiwanuka looks to have the other spot, but also look for him to play on the defensive line in pass rushing situations.
Chase Blackburn is a great story. He went from substitute teacher starting middle linebacker in the super bowl and making a huge interception. Everyone likes a good story like that and if he does start, the story gets even better.
If “Big Blue” can find a way to shore if their linebacker situation with Blackburn, Rivers, Boley and Kiwanuka, there is no telling how deep–and how far– they will help carry the defending Super Bowl champions can go in 2012.