[Remember to check the '2010 NFL Draft' section for all stories relating to the draft.]
No one who is thinking clearly will argue against defense being the priority of the New York Giants' draft this April. If the Giants choose, however, to grab a left tackle prospect with their No. 1 pick and address middle linebacker, defensive tackle and other needs later, it would be hard to argue against that as well.
We know the offensive line began to show cracks in 2009, and elite tackle prospects are not easy to find. There are several probable first-round picks who fit that description this time around, though.
Today, one of them is the subject of our Daily NFL Draft Prospect Profile. That would be Anthony Davis of Rutgers, a 6-foot-6, 330-pound behemoth who could be off the board before the Giants select. If he isn't, though, things could get interesting.
Let's take a closer look.
Anthony Davis Scouting Reports
Great strength, size and length with long arms. Excellent footwork with very good quickness and agility for a man his size (6'6" 330lbs). Plays with very good balance while displaying tenacity and power. Keeps his feet moving and is a very good run blocker. Has played on a solid offensive line throughout college and he has been the anchor. Inconsistent technique and questionable work ethic and character. Ran a 5.38 at the combine with 21 reps on the bench (225 lbs).
From SB Nation's Mocking The Draft.
Has a very good shot at being the first tackle taken this April. He certainly looks the part at 6’6/325 pounds, but he is more than just a sexy prospect from the naked eye. He is one of the more powerful linemen in this class and that should get him on the field right away. He has more than enough athleticism to get by and with some good coaching, his technique will evolve the point where he can be a Pro-Bowl caliber left tackle. He has battled some minor weight issues and been benched on two separate occasions for violating team rules, so there will need to be some investigating in to his character and work ethic.
From the National Football Post.
He certainly has the power to hold the point of attack against the bull-rush. Looks natural on the move in the run game. Does a nice job breaking down in space and hitting/sealing targets at the second level. Displays natural power on contact as an in-line run blocker, consistently turning defenders away from the ball and saying on blocks. Overall, he looks like the nation's premier left tackle prospect.
From Walter Football, which I have begun to realize tends to write some of the most negative scouting reports you will find on many players. Whether that is good or bad I don't know. It is just different.
Davis' intangibles aren't as bad as Andre Smith's, but they're bad. Davis is a highly overrated prospect, but some team will still draft him in the top 25 picks. In the beginning of the year, his tape was terrible and this turned me off, but once he got in shape toward the middle/end of the season, he was far more productive. Davis will be as good as he wants to be, but ultimately he's not the type I'd take a chance on. Players with really poor intangibles - especially offensive tackles - don't often pan out in the NFL. Two sources have told me he performed poorly during the interviews at the 2010 NFL Scouting Combine.
Player Comparison: Jason Peters. Peters is an elite player when he puts in the work, but despite a great skill set, he is a pretty average tackle. Like Davis, conditioning and love of the game is an issue with Peters.
Why Davis fits with the Giants
Because he is "the nation's premier left tackle prospect." If the guy is a Pro Bowl player wouldn't the Giants line be set for a long time with him on one side, Will Beatty on the other and David Diehl sliding in to left guard? It will be interesting to see if the Giants look to add a tackle in the draft. It will also be interesting to see in which order Bruce Campbell, Trent Williams, Bryan Baluga and Davis come off the board. All four could go in the first 20 or so picks, which tells you what a premium teams place on protecting the quarterback's blind side.
Why the Giants should pass
Because of those whispers about his work ethic and his weight problems. If the Giants want to grab a left tackle with their first pick Davis is unlikely to be their only option. With the concerns about his character, though, he might be the riskiest option.