Now that the season in the NFC East is over we can fully turn out attention to the off-season. The New York Giants have a lot of work to do and with the team hosting the Super Bowl next year I'm wondering if they will have a slightly more focused short term mindset during free agency this year, but Jerry Reese has been very good at maintaining a long term outlook. Obviously free agency comes before the draft and that will give us an indication of what positions the Giants need to attack in the draft, but anyone who knows my background (I was formerly editor at nflmocks.com) -- knows my love lies with the draft, so I'll be providing much of the draft coverage this year at Big Blue View.
Over the course of the next four months I'll be providing Big Blue View with an NFL draft big board, as well as many prospect profiles. My big board is made up of my opinions alone and is not weighted by position. Though in a twist because I'm writing for a New York Giants site, I will not include any quarterbacks on my board that I believe will be drafted in the first two rounds because I can see no situation in which the Giants draft a quarterback in the first two rounds.
I'll start with a basic top 50 and adjust it each month to make it more comprehensive and complete by the time the draft rolls around.
A few disclaimers, even though I don't think it will be a big issue in this particular community as nothing stirs up heated debate (and name calling) more than draft coverage:
-- I have left off some players that have said they are going back to school (Kyle Van Noy, C.J. Mosley, Louis Nix III- is Vince Wilfork good coming out of college, etc.).
-- These are my opinions. I'm not concerned that no one else has Ansah or Xavier Rhodes in the top 16 right now. I do, that's why it's my big board, everyone is free to have their own. I'm also not projecting where people will be drafted, just where I personally value them.
If you don't like my views or just want to see other big boards you can check out Mocking The Draft or National Football Post among countless others. National Football Post draft coverage, by the way, has been taken over by Russ Lande, formerly of Sporting News. I have not been able to find out what happened to Wes Bunting.
-- If I have not seen a player personally play, he is not in the top 50 right now. For example, South Eastern Louisiana cornerback Robert Alford has a great reputation in the scouting community and he could very well end up being selected with a top 50 pick, but I haven't seen him play, so I'll just pass that name on to you and be sure to see what he can do in the pre-draft process.
-- This process is fluid. If you see something at the combine or in the All-Star games you didn't see before during the season you go back and look at the players' games again and see if you missed something the first time. Don't adjust your board just because of the combine, adjust it because the combine made you go back and take another look at a player.
-- I really like this linebacker class and even though I'm not one of those guys who beats drums for linebackers. I would love to see if one falls into the Giants' lap in the first or second round.
1. Luke Joekcel, OT, Texas A & M*
2. Star Lotulelei, DT, Utah
3. Chance Warmack, G, Alabama
4. Damontre Moore, DE, Texas A & M*
5. Jarvis Jones, LB, Georgia*
6. Dee Milliner, CB, Alabama*
7. Taylor Lewan, OT, Michigan
8. Dion Jordan, DE, Oregon
9. Bjeorn Warner, DE, Florida State
10. Jonathan Cooper, G, North Carolina
11. Jake Matthews, T, Texas A & M*
12 Alec Ogletree, LB, Georgia*
13. Sheldon Richardson, DT, Missouri*
14. Xavier Rhodes, CB, Florida State University*
15. Barkevious Mingo, DE, LSU*
16. Ezekiel Ansah, DE, BYU
17. Jonathan Hankins, DT, Ohio State*
18. Manti Te'o, LB, Norte Dame (those clamoring for Te'o might get their wish after BCS Championship Game)
19. Sharrif Floyd, DT, Florida*
20. Jonathan Banks, CB, Mississippi State
21. Kevin Minter, LB, LSU*
22. Eric Fisher, OT, Central Michigan
23. Tavon Austin, WR, West Virginia
24. Arthur Brown, LB, Kansas State
25. Sam Montgomery, DE, LSU*
26. Zach Ertz, TE, Stanford*
27. Anthony Barr, LB, UCLA*
28. Kenny Vaccaro, S, Texas
29. Jordan Poyer, CB, Oregon State
30. John Jenkins, DL, Georgia
31. Kennan Allen, WR, Cal
32. DeAndre Hopkins, WR, Clemson*
33. Matt Elam, S, Florida*
34. Kawann Short, DT, Purdue
35. Barrett Jones, G/C/T, Alabama
36. Giovanni Bernard, RB, North Carolina*
37. Tyler Eifert, TE, Norte Dame*
38. Alex Okafor, DE, Texas
39. Oday Aboush, OT, Virginia
40. Cornelius Carradine, DE, Florida State
41. Robert Woods, WR, USC*
42. Jesse Williams, DL, Alabama
43. Datone Jones, DE, UCLA*
44. Markus Wheaton, WR, Oregon State
45. Tony Jefferson, S, Oklahoma*
46. Khaseem Greene, LB, Rutgers
47. Philip Thomas, S, Fresno State
48. Logan Ryan, CB, Rutgers*
49. Sylvester Williams, DT, North Carolina*
50. David Amerson, CB/S, North Carolina State
51. Justin Hunter, WR, Tennessee*
If you're wondering if I was going to include quarterbacks Geno Smith (West Virginia), Tyler Wilson (Arkansas), and Matt Barkley (USC) are my only three top 50 players at quarterback.
Just missed the cut: S Eric Reid, OT Lane Johnson, WR Terrance Williams,
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