CB Corey Webster hates thinking about last season, when the Giants' defense was torched for an abominable 427 points (third-worst in the NFL), including 85 the final two weeks of the season. Even if the secondary wasn't at the center of the blame, it still bothers him.
"I have not looked back much," Webster told PFW. "All I know is we have to play better, all of us.
"We can't cover if the rush isn't good up front, and those guys need us to do our job on the back end for them to be successful. Everyone has to play well, not just one part (of the defense). Everything is tied into each other."
Things are looking up. Although there are some things to iron out in the front seven, the Giants' secondary is beginning to look like a first-rate group again. Webster is part of an outstanding group of corners that goes four-deep, a group that he thinks can be elite.
"I won't lie to you," Webster said. "I want to be the best in everything I do, so I work at being the best corner (in the NFL), or among the best. As a secondary, I think we can compete with anybody in the league."
Safety — a season-long problem in 2009 — stands to improve, too. With Kenny Phillips' miraculous comeback from a knee injury last December, he and Antrel Rolle can become one of the NFL's better safety combos, with Deon Grant and Michael Johnson in reserve.
"It shows how much work (Phillips) put in this offseason to get back to where he was," Webster said. "He has used every day to not only get back to where he was, but to get better.
"I think he'll set the tone for us defensively."
The Giants are likely to mix up their coverages more this season under defensive coordinator Perry Fewell after being somewhat predictable last season. Having better personnel will help.
"I think we're going to mix it up a lot this year, especially in the red zone," Webster said. "We don't want to be (a defense that) sits back and reacts to the offense. We want to make them react to what we're doing, as well. We're (deep enough) where we can do different things with who we have; we're not limited as much."
For authoritative coverage and analysis of NFL news, free agency and fantasy football, visit ProFootballWeekly.com.