Forget Auburn's Greg Robinson or Texas A&M's Jake Matthews. It would take a series of unbelievable screw-ups by the 11 teams in front of the New York Giants to make either of those players available when GM Jerry Reese picks at No. 12 in the 2014 NFL Draft on Thursday. If the Giants select an offensive lineman at No. 12 it will almost certainly be either Michigan offensive tackle Taylor Lewan or potential five-position player Zack Martin of Notre Dame.
Who ya got? Reese wouldn't tip his hand during his pre-draft press conference.
"We like guys who are versatile, versatile players, if a guy can play guard and tackle. We're not going to pass up a left tackle who we think is only a left tackle because he can't play guard or center or different positions, but the more you can do in this league, the better off you are," Reese said.
So, Lewan or Martin? For the Giants it might simply come down to which guy is available.
Highly-regarded NFL writer Bob McGinn of the Milwaukee Journal-Sentinel had some interesting info on both players in his breakdown of the best offensive linemen in the draft.
When it comes to Lewan, most analysts have recently seemed to indicate Lewan's character isn't likely to be a concern. McGinn's report, however, gives you pause:
"He's had some off-the-field issues," one scout said. "He's also bigger, more athletic and has longer arms than Matthews. He's the fastest O-lineman in the draft. I know he can pass protect from left tackle. He is the guy that is not getting his real due, OK?" Also led tackles in the broad jump (9-9), bench-pressed 29 times and posted 21 on the Wonderlic. "He'd be an OK left (tackle) and a good right tackle," another scout said. "There's some issues there, I'm sure. Somebody described him as Eddie Haskell, which is probably a good analogy. I don't worry about that. But you don't want to be getting calls at night on the guy." Has repeatedly lost his cool on and off the field. "He's got a mean streak," a third scout said. "He's eccentric. When he was young, he'd ride around campus on a tandem bike. Not a typical Midwestern lineman." From Cave Creek, Ariz. "(Jake) Long was better because Lewan is undisciplined," a fourth scout said. "He's a better athlete than Jake Long, but he's not as tough. He's about 10 percent of the leader Jake Long was. Lewan's in it for himself. He loves it when people tell him how great he is. It's to his detriment."
McGinn, as many analysts have been doing of late, lists Martin as a guard. He rates Martin the No. 1 guard prospect in the draft:
"Love him," one scout said. "Not a real bulky guy. All I know is he's got a great jam and can punch the hell out of you. Nobody beats him. Everybody keeps wanting to move him inside. Well, you better have somebody that can block those outside rushers." Height and arm length (327/8) make a move to guard or even center seem inevitable if not immediate. "Damn good," said another scout. "He might be as safe a pick as there is. I like him better than the (David) DeCastro kid (from the 2012 draft). DeCastro never could have played left tackle at Notre Dame." Two-time captain from Indianapolis. Wonderlic scores of 21 and 27. "Much better player than (Justin) Pugh a year ago," a third scout said. "This guy's a tougher, stronger guy. He can get you out of a game as a tackle but he'll be a really good guard."
Vote in the poll and let us know which guy you would take. The only options you have here are Martin or Lewan, you can't trade up or down or select someone else.