AUSTIN, TX - SEPTEMBER 8: Jackson Jeffcoat (44) of the Texas Longhorns knocks down a pass from B.R. Holbrook (12) of the University of New Mexico Lobos on September 8, 2012 at Darrell K Royal-Texas Memorial Stadium in Austin, Texas. (Photo by Cooper Neill/Getty Images)
Jerry Reese, Marc Ross, and the rest of the New York Giants scouts work is never done. Thanks to the efforts and connections of Chris Stueber we'll now have an idea of where the Giants scouts are on College football Saturdays throughout the year.
Stueber writes that the Giants that will be attending the Virginia Tech-Pittsburgh game, the Northern Iowa-Iowa game, Eastern Michigan-Purdue game, South Alabama and North Carolina State game, Texas against Ole Miss , and South Carolina State at Arizona.
The two games that stick out immediately are the games featuring Virginia Tech and Texas. The Giants have shown an affinity for drafting ACC players and scooped up two Virginia Tech players in the 2012 NFL draft. The Longhorns game is intriguing because they have some big-time players on defense who might be on the Giants' radar.
I'll give you a breakdown of the two big games and the players you could watch.
It's very early in the NFL season, but with the Giants going heavy on offense in the 2012 draft. I'd imagine the focus for the Giants will be on the defensive side of the ball.
Virginia Tech at Pittsburgh
The player I think that would most intrigue the Giants on the Virginia Tech Hokies is DE James Gayle. There are some positions that are hard to pinpoint what the Giants focus on in their scouting, but defensive end is not one of them. For defensive ends the player has to be athletic, and have long arms. If a defensive end does not have long arms he won't be on the Giants. Watch Gayle in this game. He is currently projected to be a day two pick, with the potential of ending up in the first round.
The other best prospect in this game is QB Logan Thomas, but he's not going to be on the Giants' radar. He is, however, fun to watch!
Pittsburgh's best prospect is running back Ray Graham. Graham is a smaller, speedy scat-back type. Could be a day two pick, but I doubt he's picked by the Giants because they just spent a first-rounder on David Wilson. Wide receiver Devin Street is talented as well.
Offensive linemen to watch:
Pittsburgh: Chris Jacobson, Ryan Turnley
Virginia Tech: Nick Beckton, Andrew Miller, Vinston Painter
Texas at Ole Miss
The Texas Longhorns are absolutely loaded on defense with four potential first-round picks. Two are defensive ends and two are defensive backs.
Jackson Jeffcoat and Alex Okafor, defensive ends: Jackson just looks like a player the Giants will be drawn to. He's listed at 6-foot-5, 250 pounds. He's athletic, lean, and has some length. He's also been very productive.
Okafor is another potential first-round pick. I think of the two, the Giants would prefer Jeffcoat based on how they have drafted in the past. Still Okafor is a terrific young player with good length and is a potential target as well.
Kenny Vaccaro, S and Carrington Byndom, CB: The Giants desperately need depth in the secondary at safety and cornerback and the Texas Longhorns have two very good ones. The Giants have shown a preference for taller cornerbacks who can run, and that is Byndom. Vaccaro is a versatile guy with good size and pretty good range. He can play in the run game and deep in coverage. Hopefully the Giants are targeting a player like Vaccaro in the draft.
Purdue has a very talented defensive tackle, Kawann Short, who is likely to be a first-round pick. The Giants might be looking at defensive tackles if Marvin Austin doesn't progress as much as they hope this year or if they decide to part ways with Chris Canty and his contract after the season.
Iowa has an intriguing cornerback prospect, Micah Hyde, whom the Giants might be interested in. They also have a day three developmental quarterback prospect in James Vandenberg. I assume eventually the Giants will look to groom a young quarterback to be Eli Manning's backup. If it's not Vandenberg, the Giants might be interested in North Carolina State's Mike Glennon. He's projected to be selected earlier in the draft right now, but he hasn't had a great start to his season. He's a talented guy who could be the next Rhett Bomar for the Giants. We'll see.
Glennon's teammate, cornerback David Amerson, is a physical marvel and has terrific ball skills. He has had a very poor start to his season after being projected as a top 10 pick over the summer. Amerson looks like a candidate to make a move to safety in the NFL. He would be a good pick for the Giants late in the first round. (You know, when they pick 32nd in the 2013 draft).
Lastly, in the South Carolina State at Arizona game there are four viable draftable secondary players. Three play for Arizona: safeties Marquis Flowers and Adam Hall, and cornerback Shaquille Richardson. South Carolina State's Jakar Hamilton is also a name to know. He is a former Georgia Bulldogs safety who transferred to South Carolina State.
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