Hi everybody, long-time lurker here and this is my first piece. Anyway, I remember debating with various people about what our draft would look like. Every time we got to a standstill, the default response was, "Well, let's see what they do in free agency." Well, I think it's pretty safe to say that we aren't going to make any huge moves in free agency from this point on. I also think it's pretty safe to say that none of us were expecting the gigantic spending spree that Reese went on. But after said spending spree, I'm seriously liking the way this team is shaping up. So let's look at the final pieces that we're going to get going into the 2014-15 season: our draftees.
Dare I say it, but we might actually be able to follow Reese's mandate of "draft the best player available." I mean, that's always been our supposed strategy, but we haven't exactly followed it to the letter, because we've usually had gaping holes. Now, we could use some depth at a couple positions, but we don't really have any gaping holes. In no particular order, here are the areas that I feel we could use some help in:
- Defensive line. DT looks okay with Hankins, Jenkins, and Patterson. DE lacks depth with JPP, Moore, and Kiwi. If we knew JPP was healthy this would be a slightly different story, but we still need some depth. I'd be open to drafting a DT or a DE with the mindset that Jenkins can play either position fairly well. If targeting DT, we'd need a 3 tech as well *ahem--Donald*. And we all know that JR looooooves his freakishly athletic DEs, so I suspect we'll grab one somewhere in the draft.
- TE. I don't know what stage Robinson is at in his development, and nobody outside of the Giants FO knows either. So unless Reese is 100% confident that Robinson will be his starter, I expect us to bring in a new face. Originally, I thought that would be by free agency, because a one year deal would give us some time for Donnell and Robinson to develop. As cap space as rapidly dwindled, however, it's become clear that Reese is looking towards the draft. The only problem that I have with this is that tight end isn't exactly a plug and play position; TEs drafted generally take a year or so to become starters. And since we need a starter NOW, the TE will have to be pro-ready. That really narrows our options down to Ebron or ASJ. Niklas, while very intriguing, is too much of a project.
- WR. We could use a big, physical WR, and with such a deep draft class, I would be shocked if we don't pick one. Reese likes to keep Eli's armory well-stocked, so I would almost guarantee that we pick a WR.
- LB. Our linebacker corps are significantly better than they were one year ago between McClain and Beason. However, Beason is a bit injury prone, and I'd love to get a young LB to be mentored by Beason. This would kill two birds with one stone, but I really don't expect us to spend a high pick on a LB, since we all know that JR hates that. Shame, because I love Skov. Oh, well.
- OL. I think that with the cash we shelled out for him, Walton is our starting center. So that gives us three definite linemen: Pugh, Schwartz, and Walton. Beatty and Snee, if healthy, most likely slot into the other two spots. I also believe that Brewer and Mosely may be ready to contribute this year. However, it still makes sense to draft depth. I'm inclined to go for a center, because we're one injury away from starting Cordle (blech).
- Donald - DT. He's gotten a lot of love over the past couple of days, and it's easy to see why. He's a great 3 tech DT. The only knock on him is his height, but I honestly think that helps him get better leverage, so I have no problems with him. That lets Jenkins slide to DE for good depth. Now the interior pass rush gives the offensive line fits and lets JPP do what he does best. Video can be found here. Other considerations here: Ebron, Evans.
- ASJ - TE. He's big, he's fast, and he's strong. Check please. Niklas fits the Giants prototypical TE approach, but we need a plug and play guy and McAdoo hasn't really made it clear what role a TE plays in his offense. The way I see it, an oversized-WR TE solves two problems: first, you have your starting TE. Second, you have a really nice shiny toy for Eli. Video can be found here. Other considerations: Niklas, Skov.
- Tuitt - DE He's a slightly less athletic version of Justin Tuck. What's not to like? Now we get our awesome defensive line rolling again. With a healthy JPP, this could be a ridiculously good defense. Other considerations: Roby, Joyner
- Moncrief - WR. Yeah, I like Moncrief. He's got Bo Wallace (who?) throwing to him, but he's still excellent. What does that say about him? Lot's of YAC. So he should fit well into our new West Coast-ish offensive scheme. He's a physical WR with an excellent double move. Here comes the return of Big Blue Skies . . Video can be found here.
- Steen - C. Steen was great before he got injured this year. As of last year, he was mocked as high as the second round. He's a steal here in a deep draft class, and he gives us some depth at center.
- Coleman-WR. I may be going a little too overboard on the WR train, but man would I be thrilled to nab Brandon Coleman in round 6. He was super well regarded last year and then he fell off of a cliff for reasons unknown this year (some of it may have to do with Nova throwing to him). Well, one man's trash is another man's treasure. Coleman could be a huge steal; he's big, he's quick, and he has deceptive speed out in the open, kinda like Hakeem Nicks used to. Video can be found here. Other considerations: Wilder. I give him a writeup because I realllllllyy would've liked to get Wilder, but I just can't see us picking him with his character concerns. He's got a very low center of gravity and looks like he's shot out a cannon on every play; perfect as a power back. With more workouts, he can work on his endurance and win those footraces he often gets into. Video can be found here.