The 2017 NFL Draft is a little over three weeks away. Around the league, NFL teams are putting the finishing touches on their big boards, and those of us on the outside, are finishing up our own draft prep and narrowing down our lists of who might go where in the draft itself.
This is the time, when most of us are about mocked out, that mock drafts truly start to get interesting.
This week Mocking The Draft brings us a two-round mock draft to introduce 32 more prospects who’s name we will be hearing in 17 or 18 days (and a few hours).
23. New York Giants: Garett Bolles, OT, Utah
New York fans will love this mean and nasty offensive tackle who will absolutely obliterate defenders, even if the whistle has blown.
Raptor’s Take: The way the board fell, I think I would be fine with this pick.
Bolles is a smooth mover with solid technique and surprising ability to block in space. I would actually be a bit surprised to see him here, as Bolles is my pick to be the first tackle off the board, but in this case that was Ryan Ramczyk to the Denver Broncos. The Giants would certainly like Bolles’ attitude on the field, which would fit right in with the nasty and tough-minded Flowers, Pugh, and Richburg.
Bolles has one big issue that will have to be overcome, related to his size and age. At “just” 297 pounds (yeah, that is still a very large human), Bolles could get moved against his will by more powerful college players, a problem that is unlikely to go away in the bigger and stronger NFL. However, at 25 years old, it is viable to wonder how physically maxed-out he is, and whether or not he can successfully add enough strength and mass to overcome that deficiency while still keeping his movement skills intact.
With the board falling this way, I might strongly consider Alabama’s Cam Robinson. Robinson has some bad habits that will need to be coached out of him, but at just 21 years old, 6-6, 322 pounds, and with vine-like 351⁄2-inch arms, he fits the Giants’ mold for linemen and their age/upside profile for the first round. Robinson doesn’t bring it all the time (one of his bad habits), but when he unleashes on an opponent, he is a force — just ask Myles Garrett.
55. Evan Engram, TE/H-Back, Ole Miss
After missing on Howard and Njoku in the first round, the Giants would get the tight end they need in the second with Engram.
It is fair to wonder whether or not Evan Engram is really a tight end, but the prospect of a defense having to deal with him, Sterling Shepard, Brandon Marshall, and Odell Beckham Jr. just is not fair.
Engram might be able to eventually work his way up to 240-245 pounds, but he will likely always be a “move” piece who lines up all over the offensive formation, and only occasionally in-line. The most athletic tight end at the combine in terms of raw numbers, Engram graded out as having the third-highest SPARQ score at the combine, and will walk into the league in the 93rd percentile of all NFL tight ends. He is simply too big for most defensive backs to deal with, and far too athletic for linebackers to stick with in coverage. Engram jumped off the field on tape and was consistently uncovering and producing after the catch.
While he will never be able to deal with defensive linemen one-on-one, he is a good blocker at the second level. Engram is capable of delivering the block to a smaller linebacker or DB that springs a running back for a big gain. As a receiver, he is the natural answer to Cover 2 defenses, and can be a vertical threat to blow the top off of defenses and clear out room for underneath routes.
For the Giants in particular, Engram’s versatility and athleticism would make for an interesting, and dangerous, “12” personnel package with Rhett Ellison, that gives the illusion of an “11” 3-wide receiver set.