Giants’ Draft Outlook: Mocking the Mocks
John Fennelly , Executive Editor
Want my draft strategy? No? Good, because I don’t really have one. The Giants do, and if I am reading them right, they will wait their turn at #19 and end up with a quality player.
They really can’t go wrong this year. They are far enough down the order where they won’t reach and far enough up where the talent is still prime. It’s not a great QB draft, but there’s plenty of good players to go around at all the other positions.
Here are some experts see the Giants doing in the first round:
Rob Rang CBSSports.com: Tyler Eifert, TE, Notre Dame
On paper the Giants appear to have filled the hole at tight end with the addition of rookie Adrien Robinson and veteran Martellus Bennett. Robinson is very raw, however, and Bennett only signed a one-year deal. Eifert won the Mackey Award in large part due to his soft hands and body control, but showed even better speed and overall athleticism that expected in combine workouts.
Fennelly: If the Giants re-sign Bennett, this probably won’t happen. If Eifert is there at 19, I’d be more than shocked. No way 18 teams pass on him. This kid is Shockey without the baggage. Put him on the field with Nicks, Cruz and Randle and the Giants passing game will be practically unstoppable. Only knock on him is his blocking, but he’ll shore that up under Mike Pope’s tutelage. Note: I like Stanford TE Zach Ertz, too. Would not be surprised if he is the Giants’ top pick if Eifert is gone and they are in the market for a TE.
Dane Brugler CBSSports.com: Ezekiel Ansah DE, Brigham Young
Stop me if you’ve heard this before — the Giants select the top pass rusher left on the board with their first-round pick. Ansah still needs a lot of work, but his NFL upside will land him in the top-20, if not higher.
Fennelly: Another insane fantasy. Taking Ansah would give the Giants another pass rushing star with unlimited potential. Just the thought of this guy on the Giants has my mind racing. Doubt he’ll be there at 19, but you never know. Keep your fingers crossed.
Tony Pauline USA Today: Lane Johnson OT, Oklahoma
The Giants must address the tackle position, and Johnson comes with tremendous upside.
Fennelly: Not sure he’ll be on the board when the Giants pick, but if he is I would not pass on him. I love big OTs and there is very little to dislike here: athletic with long arms and quick feet. He nailed his combine, too. I would be gloating over this pick, but I don’t think there are 18 GMs stupid enough to let Johnson slip by them.
Walter Football.com: Damontre Moore DE/OLB, Texas A&M
Smart teams like the Giants, Steelers and Ravens always end up getting a prospect who falls during the draft. Teams constantly selecting in the top 15 are stupid, so intelligent front offices take advantage of their dumb decisions on Draft Day. One player who’s probably going to drop is Damontre Moore. He did not perform well at the Combine, posting just 12 bench press reps and running an ugly 40 before getting hurt. Giant fans know that general manager Jerry Reese loves drafting pass-rushers. With Osi Umenyiora entering free agency this March and Justin Tuck having a down year, Reese may select a defensive end early this April.
Fennelly: His combine was awful (12 bench presses and a 4.95 40), so he could very well be there when the Giants pick. But, is he a pro-level performer? And is he going to be atop Jerry Reese’s board at that point? I don’t see it, but I’ve been wrong before.
Draftek.com: Shariff Floyd DT, Florida
There might not be a hotter prospect right now than Floyd. Floyd has been mentioned by Mike Mayock has a guy who could go as high as #3 overall here and it’s possible that Floyd could end up a Top 10 pick in this draft, though this is the time of year when teams really start using misdirection! The Giants will be looking to improve their defense during the off-season after having a disappointing year in the 2012 season when the defense ranked 31st in yardage, and only had 33 sacks. Floyd would be a terrific complement to starter Linval Joseph, and a needed one after the recent release of Chris Canty. This is a guy with a ton of potential. If you’re not wise to Shariff Floyd yet, be sure to give a thorough look-over at the hottest prospect in the draft. The Giants need a player of his caliber along the defensive line.
Fennelly: I’m not going to even speculate on this one. I don’t see him being available for the Giants at 19 after his impressive combine. He’s all upside right now and you know how teams love the hot hands.
Bucky Brooks NFL.com – DJ Fluker OT, Alabama
Fluker is a notch below Fisher, but scouts will view him as a RT in the mold of Vikings RT Phil Loadholdt. Big, physical road grader
Fennelly: I never say no to a big tackle in the draft, but after seeing Fluker work this week, he could be a risk. He is a RT only. Not sure he has the dexterity the Giants look for in their OTs…he needs to be coached-up a bit and may lack the stamina and quickness to match up with speed rushers. If Beatty is signed and Brewer is ready, the Giants will probably pass and take a project they can develop in the later rounds.
Matthew Fairburn SB Nation – Tank Carradine DE, Florida State
This match seems unfair. The Giants, who have been so effective at finding defensive end talent get the best 4-3 pass rusher in this class. The only red flag on Carradine is the torn ACL he suffered back in November. But he plans to workout for scouts before the draft. If he does that, he will be a top 20 pick.
Fennelly: Again, I never say never to a quality pass rusher, but not sure Carradine is worth a first-round pick any longer. There will be too many other tempting options on the board to reach for a player coming off an injury. If he’s right, he’ll be just what the Giants look for in the DEs. That’s a pretty big if right now, though.
What is missing here are suggestions for defensive back. That is a sore spot for me right now (and I’ve got the stats to support that feeling). Depending on how free agency goes, the draft could be the place the Giants go hunting for reliable DBs. Two I wouldn’t mind seeing in Blue: NC State’s David Amerson and Logan Ryan of Rutgers.