As we well know, the New York Giants are on their bye week this week. That means we don’t have a game to talk about this weekend, but it also means we have an opportunity to talk about something different this week.
As I like to say, every season is Draft Season, and if you’re a regular listener to “The Chris and Joe Show”, we’ve been peaking ahead to the 2021 NFL draft with scouting reports of the prospects who have already declared. Today we wanted to do a very (ridiculously) early three-round mock draft and see how things might shake out for the Giants.
Round 1 - 8th overall
Chris’ pick: Micah Parsons (LB, Penn State)
Reasoning: I went into the first round with a strategy of “Best Player Available.” The Giants have needs all over their roster and lack real playmakers at too many cornerstone positions. Parsons was far and away the best player available and his versatility to play downhill, off-ball, blitz, or even contribute as a part-time EDGE in certain looks could help address a number of needs on the Giants’ defense.
Joe’s pick: Penn State LB Micah Parsons
Reasoning: Despite the Giants picking at eight, they seriously lucked out with Micah Parsons sliding all the way to them. Thanks to an early emphasis on quarterbacks, Parsons lands with a team desperately in need of a dominant second linebacker. While the Giants love to avoid taking linebackers early, this year might be different with Parsons on the board. The former EDGE defender turned linebacker is the perfect multi-faceted player for a creative defensive coordinator like Patrick Graham. Parsons is a strong tackler with a good blend of size and speed, and the ability to be a moveable chess piece.
Round 2 - 40th overall
Chris’ pick: Aidan Hutchinson (EDGE/DL, Michigan)
Reasoning: I really wanted to go offense with this pick and wide receiver in particular. The Giants desperately need a true No. 1 receiver to set off their offense and let the rest of their skill position players play the roles that fit them best. But the board just didn’t shake out like that. The best player available is Notre Dame offensive tackle Liam Eichenberg, but I want to give Andrew Thomas and Matt Peart a chance to develop as bookends. My choices here were Jayson Oweh or Hutchinson and I ultimately chose Hutchinson. Oweh is a better pure scheme fit with a long frame and freak athleticism, but the Giants will be getting Oshane Ximines and Lorenzo Carter back eventually. Likewise, I just drafted a versatile freak athlete in the first round. Given the salary cap realities of 2021, I would likely be letting Leonard Williams go to seek his fortune elsewhere. Hutchinson gives similar upside as a defensive lineman, more consistent pass rushing upside, and would do so at a much lower cap number.
Joe’s pick: Purdue WR Rondale Moore
Reasoning: Last year’s receiving class was historic, but 2021 is not far off. This year the Giants have to add another receiver to the mix, and luckily Rondale Moore was still available early on in the second round. When Moore originally opted out of the season, many considered him to be a mid first round prospect because of his athleticism and shiftiness. Now that he’s opted back in and dealing with injuries, Moore is being passed by other receivers currently playing. If Moore slides all the way into the second round, he’s a talent the Giants cannot pass up on. While they’d benefit more from a bigger receiver, Moore’s explosiveness provides serious immediate impact for offenses.
Round 3 - 72nd overall
Chris’ pick: Seth Williams (WR, Auburn)
Reasoning: This is a reach according to The Draft Network’s big board. I could have gone with Kadarius Toney out of Florida, who is their 72nd graded prospect, but I decided to bet on the upside of Seth Williams. Williams is a big, powerful, and explosive wide receiver at 6-foot-3, 225 pounds and an absolute bully at the catch point. He knows how to use his size and power to win contested catches and he could turn into something like what A.J. Brown has become for the Tennessee Titans.
Joe’s pick: Pitt EDGE Patrick Jones II
Reasoning: Shockingly, Patrick Jones II of all players slid all the way to the Giants in the beginning of the third round. Jones is a pass rusher with round one, or early day two upside. While Jones should improve his draft stock with a good combine, having him fall into the lap of the Giants was perfect. Aside from linebacker, the Giants need an explosive pass rusher to add to their rotation. The 6-5, lengthy rusher can likely contribute early.