clock menu more-arrow no yes

Filed under:

Jerry Reese: Takeaways from GM's press conference

New, comments

Key points from GM Jerry Reese's press conference on Thursday.

Trevor Ruszkowski-USA TODAY Sports

All kidding aside about the reliance on tired, predictable cliches by New York Giants general manager Jerry Reese, there were some things that could be learned from Reese's remarks on Thursday during his pre-draft press conference. Here are some of the key takeaways.

Character counts ... especially early

Every player the Giants took in the 2014 NFL Draft has been a collegiate team captain. Reese said that reliance on character is not new for the Giants.

"We're always mindful of a player's character and background. That always goes into the equation," Reese said. "It's not really anything new for us. We're very conscious and have been for a long time about backgrounds and character."

Reese admitted the Giants will take more risks on players with character flags later in the draft.

"The thing you have to think about with these players is they're young. They do young kid stuff," Reese said. "You can't just absolutely kill ‘em, you wouldn't have anybody to draft."

Depth? What depth?

Reese disputed the notion that some positions on the roster have enough depth and don't need additional help.

"As soon as you say you've got a lot of depth at any position you don't have depth. So I know better than to say that," Reese said. "We'll draft the best player available for us, it really doesn't matter what position it is.

"We want to try to upgrade every position as best we can every opportunity we get. What we want to do is get as many good players as we can and create as much competition as we can."

Brandon Scherff can play tackle

Of course someone had to ask the general manager about the Iowa offensive tackle. Reese sounds like he does not look at Scherff as a player limited to guard in the NFL.

"I think he can play both. I think he can play tackle, I think he can play guard. I think he can play somewhere," Reese said.

That doesn't mean Reese thinks he can play left tackle. Or that the Giants will draft Scherff. It is just something to remember.

About trading up or down

The Giants don't trade often in the draft, but Reese said he will if the opportunity presents itself.

"We'll keep all our options open. We could trade up, we could trade down. That doesn't change," Reese said. "We're not looking to trade just to be cute. We think we've got an opportunity to move up, we'll move up. We think we've got an opportunity to move back we'll do that as well."

Hedging his bets on Victor Cruz

Victor Cruz said Thursday he has "zero doubts' about being ready to play in Week 1 of the regular season. Reese has maintained all along that he wants to be ready in the event Cruz isn't ready, and he continued on Thursday to hedge his bets."He looked good and he's running pretty good right now and he's scheduled to be back for the opener for us but until you get out there and turn it loose you never know what a guy's gonna do. He looks great right now," Reese said.

"I want to be prepared in case he's not here.""If you're picking inside the 12th pick you should get a good football player. If you pick high in the draft you're supposed to get better players to help you have a better football team. If you're picking last in the draft you get penalized for being successful. Whoever youpick at nine should be a better player than you can pick at 32."

"That's the way the system is we're picking at nine we expect to get a good player, a really good player."

Looking for an impact player

The Giants have the ninth overall pick in the draft, the highest pick of Reese's tenure. Reese said he is looking for a player who will help the Giants immediately.

"If you draft at nine it's a premium position, regardless of what position it is. Doesn't matter. If you draft him at nine it's a guy you expect to come in and play, and play quickly," Reese said ."If you're picking inside the 12th pick you should get a good football player. If you pick high in the draft you're supposed to get better players to help you have a better football team. If you're picking last in the draft you get penalized for being successful. Whoever you pick at nine should be a better player than you can pick at 32.

"That's the way the system is we're picking at nine we expect to get a good player, a really good player."

Making due at safety?

Reese bristled at being asked if the Giants were simply trying to "make due" at safety in 2015.

"We're not gonna make due. We're gonna try to upgrade that position just like the rest of the position," Reese said. "We have some young players that we think have some talent, but we're goiing to continue to try to upgrade that position."

Second-year player Nat Berhe is, of course, confident he can handle one of those slots.

Reese said players like Chykie Brown or Bennett Jackson could be converted to safety if needed, saying "it happens all the time."

"You've gotta experiment in the spring," Reese said. "Obviously you'd like to get a guy who's been there and done the job, but you've gotta be creative in this day and age with your personnel."

Reese said that Josh Gordy will be used as a safety.

He admitted the Giants pursued Devin McCourty before McCourty returned to the New England Patriots, but said there was "a dropoff" after McCourty.

Eli Manning and the offense

Reese refused to discuss Eli Manning's contract, saying that was "inappropriate." He did, however, say he was anxious to see what the Giants would do in Year 2 under offensive coordinator Ben McAdoo.

"I think our offense should be a pretty good offense," Reese said.

A look back at free agency

What were the Giants trying to do in free agency, where they didn't make any huge, splashy signings? Reese said they were "trying to upgrade."

"We were trying to upgrade. We felt like Vereen was a really nice piece. Everybody knows what he does ... the two linebackers we thought they were upgrades. They'll battle for starting positions. Dwayne Harris, really felt the guy's a four- or five-tool player. We thought we were getting a lot of players out of one position right there," Reese said.