How could this list of New York Giants' Draft Successes conclude without Lawrence Taylor, the greatest linebacker to ever play and possibly the best defensive player of all time, topping the list? Simply, it can't.
The Giants took Taylor in the first round (2nd overall) in the 1981 NFL Draft, and he lived up to every bit of that selection and then some. He went to 10 Pro Bowls, was All-Pro eight times and finished with 132.5 sacks. Beyond that, LT (the real LT) changed the way football was played. He changed the way defenses though about their linebackers, and he changed the way offenses worked their blocking schemes. No outside linebacker had ever done that.
We are all disappointed by what has become of Taylor's life, by the fact that he seemingly has never grown up and left the wild life behind. No one can say the drafting of Taylor by the Giants was a disappointment, though. The great run of the 1980s does not happen without LT. He belongs atop this list.
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