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Giants draft picks 2022: New York selects OT Evan Neal at No. 7

Giants take big swing at fixing offensive tackle issues

2022 NFL Draft - Red Carpet
Evan Neal at the draft in Las Vegas.
Photo by Mindy Small/Getty Images

With their second overall selection in the 2022 NFL Draft, No. 7 overall, the New York Giants on Thursday selected Alabama offense tackle Evan Neal.

The 6’7½, 337-pound Neal should be a plug-and-play starter at right tackle for the Giants. He joins Andrew Thomas, the Giants’ No. 4 overall pick in 2020, as young bookend tackles for their revamped offensive line.

Neal is rookie GM Joe Schoen’s biggest swing at fixing an offensive line that was in shambles when he took over from former general manager Dave Gettleman. Schoen added offensive linemen Mark Glowinski, Jon Feliciano, Max Garcia, Jamil Douglas and Matt Gono in free agency.

Sports Info Solutions says:

Neal has every trait to be a top left tackle in the NFL, with the scheme versatility to fit into either zone- or gap-based run attacks. He has the ability to play any position besides center on the line, but he projects as a Day 1 starter on the blind side. While a bit raw and inconsistent with his technique right now, he has the upside to become a perennial All Pro.

BBV’s Chris Pflum wrote this about Neal in his prospect profile:

“Evan Neal projects as a starting offensive tackle with scheme diversity and Pro Bowl upside.

“Neal has the potential to start at left or right tackle at the NFL level, increasing his appeal to teams. His experience at guard should allow him to provide depth at either guard position, though that might be more of an “in case of an emergency” option. Neal’s height could make a move inside slightly problematic, if only due to interference with quarterback sight lines over the middle.

“Neal’s lower-body flexibility, hip, and pad level address concerns with leverage at the tackle position. He showed no issues keeping his hips and pads down as a pass protector, and only very specific issues with leverage as a run blocker. Neal has remarkably quick and smooth feet for a player his size, and is able to keep up with speed off the edge – in addition to redirecting back inside if necessary. Likewise, he has enough athleticism to recover and salvage a play if he is initially beaten off the snap. Neal can stop power rushes cold and usher speed rushers safely around the pocket.”

Why he fits with the Giants

This tweet from Zack Rosenblatt is why.

The Giants have not had a truly dependable right tackle, or pair of offensive tackles, since right tackle Kareem McKenzie retired after that 2011 season. They have been chasing the solution to their offensive tackle issues since that time. The combination of Thomas and Neal gives them the best opportunity they have had in more than a decade to solve that puzzle.

Giants round-by-round draft selections

Round 1 (No. 5) — Kayvon Thibodeaux, Edge, Oregon
Round 1 (No. 7) — Evan Neal, OT, Alabama
Round 2 (No. 36) —
Round 3 (No. 67) —
Round 3 (No. 81) —
Round 4 (No. 112) —
Round 5 (No. 147) —
Round 5 (No. 173) —
Round 6 (No. 182) —

How to watch the rest of the draft

When: Rounds 2-3, Friday, April 29 at 7 p.m. ET. Rounds 4-7, Saturday, April 30 at Noon ET.
TV: ESPN and NFL Network
SIRIUS: | XM: | SXM App: SiriusXM NFL Radio; and ESPN Radio
Streaming: The NFL draft can be streamed online at ABC.com, ESPN.com and NFL.com or via the ABC, ESPN and NFL apps.
Odds: DraftKings Sportsbook

Other BBV platforms

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