In Sunday’s weekly 7-round New York Giants mock draft, I took Notre Dame offensive guard Quenton Nelson at No. 2. Selecting Saquon Barkley or the quarterback they love the most seem like the popular options, but could Nelson really be in play for the Giants? NFL Network draft analyst Mike Mayock thinks the answer is yes.
With some qualifiers.
If there is a quarterback at two you love, Mayock believes the Giants have to take him.
“[Dave] Gettleman’s an old hog molly guy. That is his term for big linemen. I look at the Giants and here’s how I think Gettleman is probably looking at it. First and foremost, if you fall in love with a QB at No. 2 and think he’s the guys for the next 10 years, you probably have to take him,” Mayock said.
Barkley is choice No. 2.
“If you don’t love the guy and believe in him with all your heart and soul, Saquon Barkley, if he’s there at 2, is the most obvious choice in the draft. He’s special. He’s different. He’s all those things.”
After that, Nelson would be next.
“Quenton Nelson in my opinion is one of the two best players in this draft. Barkley and Nelson are the two best players in this draft,” Mayock said. “And you’re sitting at No. 2 and you’ve got a bad offensive line. You can talk all you want about the QBs and the RBs and the wideouts. But if you can’t block for them ... if you’re talking quarterback and what else is important, it’s fixing the offensive line. That doesn’t necessarily mean that at 2 you take one (an offensive lineman). But he’d better fix the offensive line. I know he knows that. And you’d love to have Saquon Barkley back there. So, next month, it’s probably, are you banging the table for one of the quarterbacks? But if you’re not banging the table, it probably has to be Barkley.
So, quarterback if you love one. Barkley if you don’t and the Browns leave him on the board for you. Nelson if Barkley goes to Cleveland at No. 1 and the Giants don’t love any of the top quarterbacks enough to select one with the second pick.
That seems like Mayock’s plan for the Giants. Is that one you could live with?