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In this correspondence, we focus on studying the problem of initial condition estimation for chaotic signals within the coupled map lattice (CML) systems. To investigate the effectiveness of a CML initial condition estimation method with different maps and coupling coefficients, the convergence and divergence properties of the inverse CML systems are analyzed. An inverse largest Lyapunov exponent (ILLE) is proposed to investigate the strength of convergence and divergence in the inverse CML systems, and it can determine if the CML initial condition estimation method is effective. Computer simulations are included to verify the relationship between the effectiveness of the CML initial condition estimation method and its corresponding ILLE.