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New York Giants notes: 'Dee-fense, dee-fense, dee-fense!'

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The most interesting thing about the group of NFL Draft prospects our New York Giants hosted Monday in East Rutherford?

The gathering was very linebacker-heavy, which is a great thing as far as I'm concerned.

Sean Lee and Navorro Bowman (Penn State), Rolando McClain (Alabama) and Michael Johnson (Division II North Alabama) were on the list compiled by Mike Garafolo of the Star-Ledger.

Of course, the players who visit are not necessarily going to be the players who are drafted. To me it is a good sign, though, that almost all the players on MG's list were defensive guys -- and that several were at the very needy linebacker position.

  • Pat Traina (Inside Football) and I will be back on the air Thursday night at 8 p.m. ET on Blog Talk Radio. We will, of course, be focusing on the upcoming Draft. CBS Sports draft analyst Rob Rang will join us for much of the show. We are also scheduled to be joined by a 'mystery guest.' The only clues I will give you are these -- it is a Giants player, and it is not D.J. Ware.

    By the way, you can still listen to last week's show. Just click the player below.

  • Speaking of Rang, he had an interesting note about South Florida defensive end Jason Pierre-Paul in his blog on Monday. He notes that scouts consider Pierre-Paul, who has been linked to the Giants, as the draft's most overrated player.

    Scouts don't question his upside, but tell me that Pierre-Paul is "at least" one year away from being a major contributor to an NFL team. He lacked the strength and toughness last year to provide much in terms of run defense for the Bulls and really disappointed at the Combine, struggling during interviews by showing very little understanding of basic football principles.

    Considering the value of pass rushers, scouts still thought Pierre-Paul would "probably" make the first round, but weren't certain what teams could afford to devote millions to such a project.

    "I wouldn't even use a second round pick on the guy," said one high ranking team official. "You see flashes, sure, but [the team that drafts him] had better keep things simple. Don't ask him to know gap assignments. Don't ask him to really play football. Just rush the passer."
  • USA Today has a look at a pair of linebackers from Texas Christian who are getting attention. Mot notable for Giants' fans is Daryl Washington, who has often been linked to the Giants in the second or third round in many mock drafts. He is an intriguing player, especially if you aren't a big Michael Boley fan.

    At 6-2 and 230 pounds, he's not exactly an imposing physical specimen, but scouts hail his speed as something that could make up for his size.

    "The thing Daryl has that the really good (linebackers) have in the NFL is speed," says Jim Bennett, Washington's high school coach. "He's a physical guy who can really run."

    Washington's time in the 40-yard dash of 4.57 at last month's league scouting combine was best among all linebackers.