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Mel Kiper draft grades 2016: "Fantastic draft" for New York Giants

The ESPN guru likes what the Giants did, obviously.

Eli Apple at the combine
Eli Apple at the combine
Joe Robbins/Getty Images

Earlier on Sunday, we posted a variety of NFL Draft grades from several respected analysts. Missing from that list, though, was the opinion of ESPN analyst. Well, Kiper's 2016 NFL Draft grades are here, and he believes your New York Giants had "a fantastic draft." He gave GM Jerry Reese and Co. a B+.

The Giants did major work in free agency to address what was, at least for them, a historically bad defense last season. But needs are still everywhere, especially on defense. Eli Apple is a really talented kid, and you have to go with your board, but at No. 10 he was a reach on mine as my No. 28th-ranked player. There will be some growing pains as he adjusts to new coaching and different techniques, but that could also bring out the best in him. Sterling Shepard is a great get for any team, and Eli Manning is going to love him. Take that guy anywhere and I'll like the pick. Darian Thompson is one of the great ball hawks in college football and could emerge as a starter at safety, and B.J. Goodson is a thumper they need at linebacker. Paul Perkins is a really good back at a good value point, and Jerrell Adams is a steal that late. Even with the one reach, this is a fantastic draft.

We won't actually know anything, of course, until these new Giants get on the field. The Giants, under pressure after three straight losing seasons, needed a good draft. Kiper is just the latest analyst to tell us it looks like the Giants had one.

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