Let’s open up the Big Blue View mailbag and see what New York Giants fans are wondering about this week.
John Kadriu asks (via Facebook): Do you think that the Giants should draft Jabrill Peppers, if he is still on the board. To add to the amazing secondary the Giants already have?
Ed says: No. I wouldn’t be a fan of Peppers to the Giants with the 23rd overall pick, which is where the Giants would have to take him. I like Peppers as a player, but what would the Giants do with him? Watch his tape and you realize he isn’t nearly as good in the box as Landon Collins. He’s definitely not big enough or physical enough to be a linebacker. Can he play center field? I’m not sure. The Giants already have good young free safeties in Andrew Adams, Darian Thompson and Nat Berhe. Plus, there are several other holes they could potentially fill with that pick. I just don’t see it.
Zach Mahoney asks (via Facebook): If Zach Cunningham doesn't go Round 1, is it a smart move for Jerry Reese to trade up in Round 2 to get him similar to what he did for Landon Collins?
Ed says: That is really hard to say without seeing what the Giants do in the first round, and who might be available to them in the second round. Cunningham seems to be a late-first to second-round type selection per most analysts and it wouldn’t be a shock if the Giants took him in Round 1. If they have a high enough grade on him, really want a linebacker in this draft and don’t think anyone else is comparable, then sure, I could see it.
Casey Grae asks (via e-mail): What are your thoughts about Tim Williams if he's available on the second or third round?
Ed says: When you watch Williams on tape, you have to like what you see. This dude can rush the passer with both speed to the outside and a nice move to the inside. Problem is there have been a lot of off-the-field concerns with Williams. There was a firearms arrest in 2016, an admission that he has failed multiple drug tests and other possible transgressions. This is the kind of risky player with character flaws the Giants have stayed away from in recent years.
Matthew D. Fetherman asks (via e-mail): If you were the Giants GM come pick 23, as of right now who would you realistically love to see available?
Ed says: I am going to answer this one, Matt, but I’m also going to chide you a bit for double-dipping. I saw that you sent this same question to another write who shall remain nameless. Let’s see how my answer compares.
I’m not going to make a selection here. I’m going to paint what I think would be the best-case scenario in terms of players the Giants could have to choose from. Considering what we have been hearing from many of the premier draft analysts recently, let’s figure that tight end O.J. Howard, running back Christian McCaffrey, linebacker Haason Reddick, a couple of quarterbacks, and at least one offensive tackle — probably Garett Bolles — have been selected.
In an ideal world, the Giants would be left with tight end David Njoku, offensive tackles Ryan Ramczyk and Cam Robinson, linebackers Zach Cunningham and Jarrad Davis and a couple of quarterbacks — for argument’s sack, Patrick Mahomes and DeShone Kizer — to choose from. Throw a pass rusher in there, too, if you’re so inclined.
You can make a solid argument for any of those selections, I think. I have my favorites in that group, but that really doesn’t matter. What matters is how the Giants value the positions, and the grades they have on the individual players.
Daniel Badillo asks (via Facebook): D.J. Fluker looks motivated to be a part of the starting O-line. Do you see him playing guard or tackle for the Giants?
Ed says: I think right now it’s impossible to answer that question with anything other than a guess. My instinct is that he winds up at right tackle, but that’s just because I think John Jerry is a better guard than Bobby Hart is a right tackle. Let’s see what happens in the draft, how the competitions along the line shake out before the season and whether or not there are any injuries. Fluker’s flexibility, and apparent openness to moving around, are good things.
Jon Metrick asks (via Facebook): Are there any players in the last 5 to 10 years that came in and played better their rookie year then flowers played last year? Can we snuff the expectation that any of the tackle prospects coming out can play better their rookie year then flowers last year?
Ed says: It is very difficult to play left tackle well as an NFL rookie. There are, however, two players who did it very well in 2016 — Ronnie Stanley (sixth overall pick, Baltimore Ravens), Taylor Decker (16th, Detroit Lions). Jack Conklin (8th, Tennessee Titans) was named All-Pro as a right tackle.
That said, there are many examples of first-round tackles who just don’t cut it. An obvious one is Greg Robinson of the St. Louis Rams, the second overall pick in 2014. Luke Joeckel, second overall pick in 2013, by the Jacksonville Jaguars, is another. Both have been awful.
There is no way to make a blanket statement that “any” left tackle would be better or worse than Ereck Flowers.