There's only one game left in the 2010 NFL Season, which means that starting next Monday, all eyes will be turning to the NFL Draft on April 22nd. Unfortunately, we here at Big Blue View have been focused on the draft for three weeks now, and part of our strategy for draft coverage will be to provide you with a weekly look at some of the more reputable mock drafts out there on the interwebs to see what the "experts" are predicting the Giants will do with their highest draft pick of the Eli Manning/Tom Coughlin era.
Obviously, these mock drafts are extremely speculative (we're still weeks away from the Combines, Pro Days, and everything else the prospects have to do to change their draft slots), and most of the time the so-called experts are pretty far off the mark (especially this early in the process). That said, you can't deny that mock drafts are a lot of fun to read and critique (which is probably why there are about 1,570,000 hits for "2010 NFL Mock Draft" on Google). So let's get to it - more after the break.
Ed already covered a few mock drafts last week, so I won't re-hash the ones which haven't been updated (including Kiper's), but here's the rest:
Mocking the Draft - Brian Price, DT, UCLA. Mocking the Draft is one of the best draft sites I've found and is a SBN partner. I'll admit that I don't know much about Brian Price, but I've seen him connected to the Giants in a few mock drafts, and I suspect I'll be learning a lot more in the ensuing weeks.
Walter Football - Brian Price
Football's Future - Brian Price
Draft Tek - Earl Thomas, S, Texas. Last time around, Draft Tek has the Giants taking TE Jermaine Gresham, which is beyond stupid. Thomas is the second best player in the draft at the Giants weakest position, and a position that has become increasingly important in the modern NFL (just look at the Steelers sans Troy Polamalu). I definitely wouldn't be opposed to this pick.
FF Toolbox - Dan Williams, DT, Tennessee. Defensive tackle seems the be the popular sentiment for the Giants first round pick. Williams is a bit bigger than Price, but also rated a bit lower on most draft boards. Like Price, I don't really know enough about Williams to say how I would feel about this pick, but I will do my research in the next few weeks.
Draft Ace - Sean Witherspoon, LB, Missouri. I think this pick is a bit of a reach. Witherspoon apparently impressed at the Senior Bowl, but most scouts saw him as a borderline first or second round player prior to that. The Giants can't afford to miss with this pick, and I wouldn't feel comfortable taking a guy because he had one good week over guys who had great college careers.
NFL Draft Dog - Jermaine Gresham, TE, Oklahoma. I only post this because I want to ridicule the stupidity of it. The Giants already have a pretty decent tight end who is still getting better in Kevin Boss, and they drafted a project tight end last year in Travis Beckum. That said, I'm a big believer in taking the best player available, especially if he's much better than anyone available at your "needs" positions. Jermaine Gresham, however, is not that guy. He's a very good college tight end, but he's not a better prospect than Jeremy Shockey or Kellen Winslow Jr. were, and neither of them would have been worth the #15 pick for a team with glaring defensive needs. And that's ignoring the fact that Gresham missed most of last season with an injury. The Giants are in no position to be drafting a guy coming off an injury at a position they under-utilize and are already pretty solid at, coming off their worst defensive performance in 40 years. Sorry, NFL Draft Dog, but this is one of the worst mock draft predictions I've ever seen.
Finally, Mel Kiper Jr. provides a supplement to his mock draft (in which he had the Giants taking DE Carlos Dunlap out of Florida), citing potential targets for rounds two and three for the Giants and the other NFC East teams.