When the New York Giants released Will Beatty and Geoff Schwartz, there were two obvious motives. The first is that they wanted to get younger and healthier, particularly on the offensive line. Second was confidence in rookie lineman Bobby Hart.
Before the season, the Giants believed that Hart's future was inside at guard, but he acquitted himself well in his lone start at right tackle. But regardless of where he plays in 2016, there is still an open spot on the offensive line.
As of this writing, it seems most likely that the Giants will look to free agency to find a dependable starter for the remaining open spot on their line. Bu while the Giants are generally good at recruiting the free agents they target, it should be remembered that they are potentially bidding against 31 other teams, and the players are free to go where they choose.
If they can't find a fifth starter by the draft, they could once again draft for the future of their offensive line. If they wait until the second round, they could look to a player like Texas A&M's Germain Ifedi
Weight: 324 pounds
Arm Length: 36 inches
Hand Size: 10¾
40 Time: 5.27
Short Shuttle: 4.75
Vertical Jump: 32.5 inches
Broad Jump: 9'1"
Bench Press: 24 reps
- Outstanding build. At 6-foot-6, and 36-inch arms that border on the absurd, Ifedi has the length the Giants love to go with big hands. He also has the thickness to move people in the run game.
- Plays with a nasty streak. Quick to get to the second level and plays through the whistle.
- Quick feet, that could develop into "Tackle Feet" at the next level with some work.
- Positional versatility. Ifedi has played both guard and tackle at A&M.
- Picks up Tackle/End stunts well.
- Played in Texas A&M's spread offense. Even much more highly rated tackles like Jake Matthews have struggled to adapt to the NFL in their first year.
- Needs to get more disciplined with his technique. Needs to get better coordinated footwork and keep his hands tighter.
- Relies on his length and strength too much. His size and build can cover up for sloppy play.
- Gets too grabby.
Big Board Rankings
Big Blue View - Not in Top 50
Mocking The Draft - 70th
CBS - 51st
Draft Tek - 82nd
Does He Fit With the Giants?
Ifedi's fit with the Giants falls firmly in the "Maybe" category.
He has a lot of traits -- height, length, big hands, strength -- that the Giants like in their lineman. However, he is not yet a finished product. He will have the same kind of learning curve to get up to speed with NFL line play as every other lineman who played in a spread "Air Raid" offense in college on top of overcoming technique issues.
Ifedi could be on the Giants radar if they think he has "tackle" upside and have signed a short-term option to book-end with Ereck Flowers, weren't able to find a right tackle, or believe that Bobby Hart could be their right tackle of the future.
Ifedi is a lot like Flowers in that he has the tools to have a very high ceiling, however, he is going to need good coaching to unlock those tools and reach that potential. We know now that Flowers has the advantage of having a ferocious work ethic, but those of us on the outside don't yet know that about Ifedi.
It was hoped that Ifedi would be the Aggies' next great offensive line prospect to enter the NFL draft.
And he could be.
However, he comes out with more warts than the last few first rounders. But he also has some intriguing tools. He is built like an NFL offensive tackle, and if he can become more of a technician, those tools can make him a good one. He could also project to guard if he can't clean up his movement skills enough to survive on the edge with NFL pass rushers.