Looking back on it, what grade would you give the New York Giants' 2014 NFL Draft class? Pretty hard not to give any class that includes a unique player like Odell Beckham Jr. and several other starting-caliber players an 'A.' That is precisely what ESPN draft analyst Mel Kiper Jr. has done in re-grading the drafts of all 32 NFL teams.
Here is Kiper on the Giants' draft:
Post-draft grade: B
Summary: If you prorate Odell Beckham Jr.'s numbers over 16 games, it comes to 121 catches for 1,740 yards and 16 TDs. I mention that only because when people see the 91 catches for over 1,300 yards and those 12 TD catches, they tend to forget Beckham didn't even play until Week 5. More incredible, through his first three games, he had only 10 catches. What happened the second half of the season was absurd. Wait -- we're supposed to be talking about the draft, right? Needless to say, the Giants might have added a generational-type talent, a guy who stands out even from a loaded WR class. I wrote after the draft, "Odell Beckham Jr. has a chance to be a really dynamic NFL player, a reliable pass-catcher with both the quick-twitch explosiveness to make plays after the catch, and the straight-line speed to run away from defenders. I thought Eric Ebron could be in play at No. 12, but Detroit took him at No. 10. Eli Manning gets a needed weapon in the passing game."
It's interesting to consider whether the G-Men take Ebron over Beckham if he's there, no? Elsewhere, Weston Richburg had his struggles at guard, but I actually think he's better at center, so that was a transition. And he did rack up well over 1,000 snaps. Not bad. Andre Williams produced when he saw the field and could be the starter in 2015, and Devon Kennard is also a likely starter after playing well down the stretch. Jay Bromley is still a question mark, and they did need D-line help, but they also saw Johnathan Hankins emerge. The Giants stood pat, hit a home run with Beckham as the third WR taken and weren't done there. Great draft.
New grade: A
Conventional wisdom, of course, is that you can't fully judge a draft class for three full seasons. Pretty safe to say we know what Beckham is, and what Weston Richburg, Andre Williams and Devon Kennard look like. This could end up as the best draft class of the Jerry Reese era as GM.
|(1)||12||WR||Odell Beckham Jr.||LSU|
|(2)||43||C||Weston Richburg||Colorado State|
|(4)||113||RB||Andre Williams||Boston College|
|(5)||152||S||Nat Berhe||San Diego State|
|(6)||187||CB||Bennett Jackson||Notre Dame|