No two mock drafts are ever the same. Which, when you think about it might be a good lesson when it comes to the real NFL Draft. You might think you know how things will turn out, but nobody knows anything for sure until it actually happens.
With that said, in recent weeks I have been doing these seven-round New York Giants mock draft, and will try to continue that weekly leading up to the draft. This week’s version uses the Fanspeak simulator and the CBS Sports Big Board.
Round 1 (23) — Garett Bolles, OT, Utah
Also considered: OT Ryan Ramczyk, DL Malik McDowell, DE Derek Barnett, DE Taco Charlton, QB DeShone Kizer, OL Forrest Lamp, OL Cam Robinson
Bolles was my first-round choice last week, as well. I seem to be honing in on him. Why? There are other ways to go here, but I truly believe the Giants have to come out of this offseason with a legitimate left tackle option. Maybe they leave Ereck Flowers at that spot, but they really should give themselves a choice.
For me, that means this pick came down to Bolles and Ryan Ramczyk of Wisconsin. I took Bolles because I believe the Giants would prefer him to Ramczyk. He will be a 25-year-old rookie, but he has the athleticism that always attracts the Giants and the type of toughness they have been trying to add via free agency. Offensive line analysts love Ramczyk’s game, and he would probably be a fine pick, but the questions about his passion for the game bug me a little.
Round 2 — Bucky Hodges, TE, Virginia Tech
Also considered: TE Gerald Everett, TE Adam Shaheen, OL Taylor Moton, OL Dion Dawkins, DE Jordan Willis
In case you guys haven’t figured it out by now, I really like what the 6-foot-6, 257-pound Hodges could bring to the Giants as a receiver. I believe Moton and Dawkins could be in play here if the Giants want an offensive lineman. Willis, too, if they want a defensive end.
Round 3 — Jordan Willis, DE, Kansas State
This is going to sound weird after listing Willis as a player I considered in Round 2, but in retrospect I’m actually kicking myself for picking him here.
He’s a fine pick, a safe one with a high floor. I just feel like I shouldn’t have gone the safe route. The player I passed on here was Tanoh Kpassagnon, the freakish defensive end from Villanova. He’s a high-ceiling guy with potential to be great, or to flame out and be nothing. With Olivier Vernon and Jason Pierre-Paul signed long term, and Kerry Wynn, Romeo Okwara and Owamagbe Odighizuwa to provide some depth this might have been the perfect time to swing for the fences and grab Kpassagnon.
Round 4 — Samaje Perine, RB, Oklahoma
I found myself staring at a board where it was obvious I was going to take a running back. The only other guys who really appealed to me in this spot were running backs D’Onta Foreman, James Conner, Jeremy McNichols and Corey Clement. Other than that, the board was filled with wide receivers. And I didn’t want to do that.
I went with Perine, a 5-foot-11, 233-pounder who could be a terrific complement to Paul Perkins. NFL.com says:
Perine is a physical runner who can create additional yardage through power and can be a complimentary "banger" for a team who already has a slasher. Perine doesn't have the burst or play speed to be a dynamic lead back, but he can handle a heavy workload if needed and he should become an immediate short-yardage and goal-line option
Round 5 — Josh Reynolds, WR, Texas A&M
I’m going to be honest. I really didn’t like my options here. With the Giants adding both Josh Johnson and Geno Smith to their roster I wasn’t going to bother selecting a quarterback, and I just wasn’t excited about what I saw on the board. Reynolds is a guy who’s skill set at least intrigued me.
Long and tall, Reynolds is a dangerous vertical threat thanks to his ball tracking and ball skills over eye-popping deep speed. Reynolds is a menace in the red-zone and can mismatch smaller cornerbacks in the air. He lacks play strength which could cause problems for him early in his career against physical corners, but his toughness, work ethic and football intelligence should overcome those concerns and help him carve out a career as a second or third receiver in the league.
Round 6 — Zane Gonzalez, PK, Arizona State
The Giants currently have only untested Aldrick Rosas on the roster as a placekicker. Gonzalez is widely considered the best placekicker in the draft. So, why not?
Round 7 — Tashaun Bower, EDGE, LSU
Another pick where, to be honest, I wasn’t thrilled with the choices. Bower is a developmental player with some upside, the kind of guy you find at this point.
Developmental prospect with intriguing size and length. Bower's physical and athletic traits could make him a target for both 4-3 and 3-4 defenses, but he will need to prove he can find the quarterback more consistently if he wants to earn reps in the league. Bower was stuck behind a talented defensive front, but he flashes often enough to believe that he could develop into a better pro than college player.