The New York Giants have a need, and it's one that is shared by the majority of NFL teams; they don't have enough truly capable offensive linemen. There are a few great ones scattered around the league, and a small supply of good ones, but most teams have to get by with average or sub-par talent. The Giants are no different, and while they have made moves to help this area in recent years, it's come at a price. A first-rounder in 2013, a second-rounder two years ago, and then a top-10 pick in the last NFL Draft. This is like doing all of your weekly food-shopping at Whole Foods. Yeah, you're likely to get good quality, but you're probably not getting value.
This is where Stanford's Kyle Murphy steps in. He's a two-year starter at a school with connotations for high-intelligence players. His experience at both left and right tackle is beneficial for a career in the NFL, and he may even be able to start at either guard spot. Projected as a third-rounder by most analysts, Murphy could be a cost-effective way of adding a mid-range starter to the Giants' group of stars and scrubs.
- Ideal raw physical traits.
- Good use of engaging the block before the defender can build momentum.
- Crunches through every play, doesn't stop until it's definitely over.
- Works well in cramped areas, uses the lack of space to his advantage for double-teams, pushing inside.
- Physicality and athleticism don't match up.
- Needs a year of NFL conditioning before he can be trusted against bull-rushers.
- Poor recovery, because if he's slightly beaten, the defender is gone.
- Despite left tackle experience, NFL ceiling may be limited to right tackle.
Big Board Rankings
Big Blue View - 87th
Mocking The Draft - 83rd
CBS - 99th
Draft Tek - 81st
Does He Fit With the Giants?
Murphy would be an excellent fit with the Giants. There's a gap on the right side of that line, and whether it's right guard or right tackle, it doesn't matter because Murphy could fill either slot. Pick him now, figure out in training camp which works best. He still seems like he has room to grow -- both mentally and physically -- but the base for an NFL lineman is right there.
I could see the Giants using him at guard as a rookie, with hopes of developing into their right tackle of the future. They can't keep stop-gap guys like Marshall Newhouse forever, and an addition like Murphy would at the very least give them an option with whether to treat John Jerry and Bobby Hart as starters. Murphy's versatility at three potential spots (RT/RG/LG) is also beneficial given the Giants' propensity for leading the league in injuries.
In each of the last three years, the Giants have spent a top 50 pick on a lineman, and arguably the higher they've been chosen, the less value they have presented. The Giants simply cannot afford to use top picks every time they need help on the offensive line. It's just not an effective method of team-building. Murphy presents the best of both worlds for a team that doesn't need to rebuild the unit as much as it simply needs some reinforcement.
I think new OL coach Mike Solari could really use Murphy, and more importantly develop him. The timing, need and projection all lines up to make Murphy a worthwhile consideration when the Giants are on the clock with the 71st overall pick in two weeks time.