We all know how much general manager Jerry Reese and the New York Giants love defensive ends. Thus, much has been made lately of the fact that the Giants were in attendance a few days ago at the Syracuse Pro Day, where the top attraction was former Orange defensive end Chandler Jones.
I hate to rain on anyone's parade, but the Giants would have been remiss not to be in attendance at the SU Pro Day. Geographically, SU is a place the Giants should visit for an event like this. Besides which, you have to believe the organization is represented in some fashion at almost every Pro Day.
That said, what happens with Jones in the 2012 NFL Draft is one of the most intriguing stories for me. Todd McShay of ESPN keeps championing Jones as a late- first round type selection. Most other draft experts and mock drafts tend to have the 6-foot-5, 266-pound Jones going in the second or even third round. So, he could be a wild-card.
The Giants now being under the salary cap after Eli Manning re-structured his contract and Brandon Jacobs was released might be an indication Osi Umenyiora will be a Giant in 2012. Still, we know better than to think the Giants won't snap up a defensive end if they find one they love.
Is Jones lovable for the Giants?
CBS Sports rates Jones as a second-round pick, but refers to a "lack of elite pass rush traits." That makes you wonder if he fits the Giants, simply because defensive ends for the New York Giants are all about the pass rush. NFL.com refers to Jones multiple times as "undersized."
Wes Bunting of the National Football Post seems to have mixed feelings about Jones. He writes:
"I love his size and length. But I worry about defensive lineman who play upright, lack a great get off burst and struggle to change directions. I don't see him as a big time pass rusher. But if he improves his pad level he could mature into a potential starting option."
ESPN's Scouts Inc., which ranks Jones 30th on its Big Board, disagrees with the assessment that Jones will be a limited pass rusher. Scouts Inc. writes:
"Still a raw but has tremendous upside in this area. Possesses above-average snap anticipation and above-average first step quickness."
I guess we will see which opinion of Jones wins out on Draft day.
Chandler Jones Profile
Weight: 266 pounds
2011 Stats: 38 tackles (7.5 for loss), 4.5 sacks, 1 interception, 3 passes defensed