Are the New York Giants "souring" on North Carolina tight end Eric Ebron, long considered a potential target for the Giants with the 12th overall pick in Thursday's 2014 NFL Draft? Respected NFL Draft insider Tony Pauline reported as much on Monday evening.
Several sources tell me the number one target for the Baltimore Ravens in round one is tight end Eric Ebron, a player they’ve coveted for quite some time. Could Ebron slide to the 17th pick? I was told earlier this evening the New York Giants maybe souring on Ebron due to many of the personality red flags we’ve reported on this site since November.
Is Pauline, who refers to Ebron as "a high-maintenance personality," right?
Once upon a time everyone who was anyone as a draft analyst had Ebron going to the Giants. As the pre-draft process has worn on ... and on .. and on Ebron has been connected to the Giants less often. Some analysts believe Ebron could be off the board before the Giants pick at No. 12, other believe the Giants would pass on Ebron due ostensibly to concerns about his blocking and his inconsistent pass-catching.
"Maybe because he's not a great blocker maybe the Giants pass on him. ... He's not gonna block and he's gonna be a little inconsistent catching the ball ... He's not the toughest guy out there," said Mel Kiper during a recent conference call.
Walter Football writes that "there are some doubts about his fit for New York."
What's The Deal?
Ebron is certainly a talent worthy of the 12th overall pick, or earlier. 'Invictus' calls Ebron "a versatile matchup nightmare, faster than not only linebackers, but most safeties as well." SB Nation's Mocking The Draft thinks Ebron could be the NFL's next game-changing tight end.
So, what are the personality concerns? Well, as near as I can tell they have to do with Ebron's inconsistent concentration, with questions about whether or not he is willing to work at things like blocking when necessary and -- maybe most importantly -- with his constant willingness to talk about how good he thinks he is.
"I'm not going to sell myself, but I'm very fast," Ebron said. "I'm very different. I play the tight end role like no one else.
"I just do different things than other tight ends do."
There are plenty of people who agree with Ebron. Perhaps, though, he has turned some teams off by being so willing to say it.
This, of course, is smokescreen season around the NFL so you never quite know what to believe. Come Thursday Ebron might end up with the Giants. He might end up off the board long before the Giants pick. He might slide as far as No. 17 to the Baltimore Ravens or No. 18 to the New York Jets. We will just have to wait and find out.