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Different perspective on Giants' 2016 draft class

Dave-Te Thomas has been writing NFL draft prospect reports directly for the NFL and a variety of teams since 1968. Thomas has graciously offered to allow us to re-print the analysis of the Giants draft that he wrote for his own blog, The NFL Draft Report. It's a valuable perspective from someone with decades of institutional knowledge. We thank him for sharing.

Eli Apple
Eli Apple
Joe Maiorana-USA TODAY Sports
Written by Dave-Te Thomas

While most "experts" are apt to make rash decisions on who "won or lost" during the draft, we at The NFL Draft Report take a different "wait and see" approach. As we have stated throughout the 2016 draft process, it is not where you are drafted, but where your NFL career actually goes.

As stated throughout our ratings process, it is not the round, but where that player will be later in his career. For any rookie, their first year in the NFL is usually a learning experience. Their playing time might increase during the course of the season, but for the most, playing time will likely come on special team action or in a mop-up role.

During that player’s second season, he needs to begin to apply what he learned during his rookie year. He should be prepared to enter camp challenging for a starting job and at the least, be ready to contribute. By the third year, that player needs to produce at the level expected when he was drafted. Failure to do so will see his team probably look for a replacement during that year’s draft process.

With that in mind, below are links to each of the Giants’ draft selections. Each report contains a profile on the player, a bit of draft history at his school and his position, along with detailed scouting reports and a breakdown of their season and game performances. Some even include extensive player comparison charts, where that athlete’s performance on the field is compared to other marquee performers in this draft class. As you will see with Eli Apple’s comparison chart, that was one of the main reasons he went earlier than the more "touted" cornerbacks.

For those interested in reading any of our previous articles on the 2016 draft class, a link to our gallery will be listed below each of the Giants’ draft selection links or you can access the directory on-line here;

ELI APPLE-Cornerback-Ohio State

Our staff has touted Eli Apple as the best cornerback in the draft not named Jalen Ramsey since Day One. We even provided teams with a very detailed statistical comparison chart that featured Apple, Ramsey, Mackensie Alexander, Vernon Hargreaves III and William Jackson III. It seems Giants brass agreed, taking the Buckeye with the tenth pick. Do you want the kitchen sink on this kid? Well, go check out his profile and complete scouting report here. Also, be sure to look at the comparison chart. In particular, look at the targeted passes-to-reception allowed figures of each defensive back and the alarming lack of attention to the running game by both Hargreaves and Jackson. The article can be found here;


Every year, fans become enamored with that great college "pass thief," the guy who comes up with that big play that has the stands rocking. All too often, those defensive backs have holes in their game that does not get exposed until they are under the watchful eyes of the astute NFL fans. At The NFL Draft Report, we stress production over potential when evaluating talent. We feel that if the athlete can not develop in four years in college, there is doubt that the "porch light" will suddenly come on when they reach the pro ranks.

In this report, I closely break down and examine every statistical aspect that goes into making a quality cornerback. While most teams seem to feel that Florida State’s Jalen Ramsey might be a better fit at free safety, the Seminole is included in this report, along with Clemson’s Mackensie Alexander, Ohio State’s Eli Apple, Florida’s Vernon Hargreaves III and Houston’s William Jackson III – all considered valid candidates to be drafted in the first round. The link to this article could be found here;

STERLING SHEPARD-Wide Receiver-Oklahoma

One of our staff’s favorite in this draft class, the Giants find a Hines Ward clone in this sensational Sooner receiver. Shepard plays with a lot of moxie and will soon endear himself to Big Blue fans. With Victor Cruz hoping to return to action in 2015, Shepard will likely fill slot receiver duties, but one look at his performance level, he can easily make Giants fans forget about their injured wide receiver. This report also includes a link to a report comparing Shepard’s 2015 performance to other Big Twelve Conference standouts – Baylor’s Corey Coleman and Texas Christian’s Josh Doctson. For this feature, go to this link;


In this article, The NFL Draft Report examines three of the elite receivers in the 2016 draft class that hail from the Big Twelve Conference – Baylor’s Corey Coleman, Texas Christian’s Joshua Doctson and Oklahoma’s Sterling Shepard. Each player report contains a profile, statistics and an in-depth scouting report. The three are then put through the "numbers test," where I examine closely every aspect of their performance numbers from the 2015 season. As an added bonus, analysis, scouting report and profile on the conference’s speed merchant, TCU’s Kolby Listenbee is also included in this report;

DARIAN THOMPSON-Free Safety-Boise State

The Boise State master ball hawk will only have to change his jersey to a different shade of blue now that he is joining the New York Giants. Once considered a late first round prospect, some teams shied away from the defender with a conference record nineteen interceptions under his belt, as he did not perform well in the agility tests at the 2016 NFL scouting Combine. Still, you can’t teach a stopwatch to play football and his thievery success indicates that Thompson might have some "skills" in that area. The link to his article can be found here;

B.J. GOODSON-Middle Linebacker-Clemson

For three years, Goodson was "just a guy" struggling to make his mark on the football field while toiling third on the depth chart at strong-side outside linebacker. In 2015, he moved into the middle and became the "man" of the hour on defense, racking up 146 tackles in the process. With an obvious need for a run-stuffing plugger in the middle of the second level, Goodson fits the bill. But, before you can anoint him as the next big-time thumper, he will need to work on improving his pass coverage skills. The link to his feature can be found here;


While he may not be the biggest, or the strongest ball carrier in the draft, UCLA’s Paul Perkins is that change-of-pace type who has the receiving skills that could chip into the playing time for the Giants’ starting backfield. Regarded more as a defensive back coming out of high school, Perkins is a legacy, as both his father and uncle have NFL pedigree. Below is a link to his profile, a bit of UCLA running back draft history and his scouting report;

JERELL ADAMS-Tight End-South Carolina

No question that Adams has great athleticism. What scouts do question are his hands – prone to dropping too many easy catches. Coming out of a school that has seen just seven tight ends drafted since 1936, and just three to ever play in an NFL game, Big Blue fans might need to be patient waiting to see if this late round athlete can become a valid football player. The link to this article, featuring his profile, scouting report and school tight end draft history can be found here;