It only took a matter of seconds after the Cleveland Browns made the first pick of the evening for the New York Giants to turn in the card announcing their selection of Will Hernandez of UTEP.
And it was a pick that Dave Gettleman probably didn’t even need that long to think about. Hernandez has widely been considered a first-round prospect and it was a complete surprise that he fell out of the first round.
Hernandez is a big, powerful, nasty, and surprisingly agile offensive guard. Built like a vending machine with arms, legs, and a bad attitude, Hernandez simply dominated his opponents at the University of Texas, El Paso. He can step in and start immediately at guard and execute any blocking scheme Pat Shurmur decides to call.
Simply looking at him — and his throwback 1980s style neck roll — you just know he is built for power football. But he is also surprisingly agile for a 6-foot-2, 330-pound interior lineman. Hernandez is able to get out and pull in man-gap schemes, run in zone schemes, mirror defenders in pass protection, or get to the second level on screen plays.
He will very quickly become one of Eli Manning’s new best friends, as he is something of a brick wall in pass protection.
Hernandez will also quickly become Saquon Barkley’s best bud by making blocks like this:
The combination of Barkley and Hernandez will go a long way toward helping the Giants return to a more physical brand of football, balancing out what should be a potent passing attack.