Markus Golden “really close to being that same guy” from before ACL tear

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The Giants banked on Markus Golden‘s continued recovery from a 2017 ACL tear when building their pass rush this offseason and they’ve been rewarded for taking that approach thus far.

Golden has at least a half-sack in each of the team’s last five games and he returned a fumble for a touchdown for a rare highlight in last Thursday’s loss to the Patriots. The five total sacks have already doubled Golden’s output from last season with the Cardinals and it’s left defensive coordinator James Bettcher, who also coached Golden in Arizona, feeling like Golden has turned back the clock.

“I think he is really close to being that same guy,” Bettcher said, via NorthJersey.com. “Markus and I talked at the beginning of the year and the goal wasn’t to get back to that guy, it was to be better than that guy. I think if you have gotten to know Markus, you’ve gotten to see how he works, how he plays the game. I think if there is anybody that’s going to come off of an injury like he had and be able to become a better player, it’s this guy. He loves the game, he works tirelessly. A lot of the plays that he makes are just second-effort plays, are just beyond skills, talent. It’s just mindset and purpose. That’s one of the reasons I have always loved him.”

Golden and Bettcher have a date with their former employers this weekend, which means that Golden will be working against a familiar foe in tackle D.J. Humphries as he tries to continue his strong start to the year by helping to snap a two-game losing streak.

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