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Prospecting: Michael Johnson, DE, Georgia Tech

In this week's edition of 'Prospecting,' let's take a look at Georgia Tech defensive end Michael Johnson.

Despite the fact that the Giants should have a healthy Osi Umenyiora next season, already have Justin Tuck and have announced that Mathias Kiwanuka is staying at defensive end I keep seeing Johnson's name connected to the Giants in many of the mock drafts floating around the Inter-Google. Two of those are below.

To be honest, I don't understand it. I know the Giants are proof that you can never have too many pass rushers and I do believe in taking the best available player, but there are more pressing holes for GM Jerry Reese to fill. Besides, the scouting reports on the 6-foot-7, 260-pound Johnson are not that impressive for a first-round selection.

From SBN's own Mocking the Draft.

Strengths: A specimen as a prospect, Johnson has the tools to be a special player. He’s athletic for a defensive end and has good quickness off the snap. Great initial burst to beat slower offensive linemen. Incredibly long-limbed player. Can cover a lot of ground quickly. Does a good job when he keeps low and can dip under offensive tackles. Sound tackler. Does a great job getting his hands up against passes and kicks.

Weaknesses: Motor has been inconsistent throughout his career. Still has a ways to go against the run. Possesses the frame of a basketball player, which he was in high school. Susceptible to cut blocks. Some speculate he should move to outside linebacker for 3-4 team, but he might be too much of a project in that role. Good strength, but could get stronger in his torso.

Final word: Johnson’s play as a pro will be determined by how hard he wants to work. If he plays hard every play and learns more pass rush moves, he could be a consistent Pro Bowler. As it stands, he’ll enter the NFL as something of a project who will need to get stronger. Some consider him an 3-4 outside linebacker, but he would be best served by adding 10 to 15 pounds of mass and staying as an end.

Round projection: 2

From NFL Draft Countdown, a site I rely on quite a bit.

Has a large rangy frame with extremely long arms...Outstanding athleticism...Great speed...Quick and agile...Terrific range...Explosive with a burst. ...

Intensity and commitment have been questioned. ... The type who will make one or two amazing plays then disappear for the rest of the game...Not nearly as impressive on film as his stats and measurables would lead you to believe...Has the physical tools to be great but needs to be a lot more consistent...Status as a top prospect is a product of potential and hype...One-dimensional "Workout Warrior" who will likely be drafted earlier than he should be...Finesse player who won't be able to handle an every down role in the NFL and profiles as a 43 pass rush specialist.

Sorry, but this guy doesn't sound to me like a player the Giants should go out on a limb for in the first round. Especially since DE is not a need position.

This Week's Mock Drafts

Walter Football: Round 1 (29th), Peria Jerry, DT, Ole Miss; Round 2 (45th), Kenny Britt, WR, Rutgers; Round 2 (60th), Gerald McRath, OLB, Southern Miss.

Draft Tek: Round 1, Larry English, OLB, Northern Illinois; Round 2, Brian Robiskie, WR, Ohio State; Round 2, Jamon Meredith, OT, South Carolina.

New NFL Draft: Round 1, Michael Johnson, DE, Georgia Tech.

Draft King: Fila Moala, DT, USC.

NFL Draft Dog: Michael Johnson, DE, Georgia Tech.

FF Toolbox: James Laurinaitis, LB, Ohio State.