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Ed’s final 7-round NYG mock draft: Two versions — with and without trades

Vote in the poll and let us know which draft you like better

NFL: APR 27 2018 NFL Draft Photo by Rich Graessle/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

After building mock draft scenarios for the New York Giants each Sunday since the end of January, I struggled to decide how I should approach this final 7-round simulated Giants mock draft. Trades? No trades? What positions would I prioritize?

In the end, I decided to present two scenarios. I did a mock draft without trades because, well, those are the 10 picks the Giants enter the draft with and we should discuss the possibilities at all 10 spots. I also did a mock draft with trades. Why? Because I will be stunned if Giants general manager Joe Schoen doesn’t make a couple of moves around the board. So, while my ‘with trades’ scenario is unlikely to be exactly how things unfold, a mock with movement around the board is also worth discussing.

Vote below to let us know which scenario you prefer.

I don’t want to influence anyone’s vote, but so that I am on the record on these two scenarios here is how I feel about my own work. In the ‘no trades’ mock I am thrilled with the first-round pick. There are, though, a couple of holes in that draft that I am not happy with. I feel like the ‘with trades’ mock presents a potentially realistic trade down in Round 1 and use extra draft resources to trade up somewhere in the middle scenario. Also, I am probably a little bit happier with the players I landed overall in the ‘with trades’ mock.

Let’s get to it.


Round 1 (No. 25) — Zay Flowers, WR, Boston College

You may have figured this out by now, but Flowers is my preferred pick for the Giants. If he is on the board at No. 25, and there is a good chance he won’t be, I think this is an easy pick.

Among the wide receivers at the top of this draft class, Flowers fits the type of receiver that both head coach Brian Daboll and offensive coordinator Mike Kafka have worked successfully with in recent years.

Daboll with 5-foot-8, 173-pound Isaiah McKenzie, 5-8, 174-pound Cole Beasley and 6-foot, 190-pound Stefon Diggs in Buffalo. Kafka with 5-10, 185-pound Tyreek Hill and 5-10, 187-pound Mecole Hardman with the Kansas City Chiefs.

Flowers is 5-9¼, 182 pounds. He runs a 4.42 40-yard dash (82nd percentile) with a 1.53-second 10-yard split (68th percentile).

GM Joe Schoen says Daboll values separation at wide receiver above all else. In a league that is becoming more horizontal and relying increasingly on quick throws with yards after catch that makes sense.

Matt Waldman of the Rookie Scouting Portfolio says Flowers is among wide receivers with the best separation skills in this draft class. He also lists Flowers as one of the four best router runners in the class and says he is among the players with the best vision in terms of finding open space. To top that off, Waldman also puts Flowers near the top tier in elusiveness after the catch.

Waldman writes:

If Flowers didn’t have technical lapses as a pass catcher, he’d not only earn the highest grade of any player in this draft class of skill players regardless of position, but he’d also have a grade on par with Jaylen Waddle’s RSP score, which was a franchise-caliber grade. And if Flowers works at his craft, which it appears he does based on the details of his route running, it won’t be long before Flowers is a slightly slower player in the neighborhood of Waddle’s skill and style of play.

Jaxon Smith-Njigba is the best wide receiver prospect right now. In two years, Flowers could be the one because he has more upside to play all three receiver positions at a high level.

Players passed on: Bijan Robinson, RB, Texas; Brian Branch, S, Alabama; Jalin Hyatt, WR, Tennessee; Bryan Bresee, DT, Clemson; Will McDonald IV, Edge, Iowa State; O’Cyrus Torrence, G, Florida

Round 2 (No. 57) — Jack Campbell, LB, Iowa

The first kink in the plan. Centers John Michael Schmitz and Joe Tippmann are both off the board, which leaves me with an interesting dilemma. I could reach here for Ohio State center Luke Wypler, but that is exactly what doing that feels like — a reach. Not doing that.

I could take either Steve Avila or Cody Mauch, interior offensive linemen who might have center flex. Or, I could go with my instinct and just take the best player I think is left on the board — and one who I think would slot nicely into the Giants’ defense.

So, that’s what I did. I know some will scream at me for taking Campbell instead of Trenton Simpson, but I believe Campbell is a better overall player. Simpson has that 4.43 40-yard dash speed, but Campbell is also an excellent athlete.

Players passed on: Trenton Simpson, LB, Clemson; Steve Avila, IOL, TCU; Cody Mauch, IOL, North Dakota State; Cedric Tillman, WR, Tennessee; Clark Phillips III, CB, Utah; Luke Wypler, C, Ohio State

Round 3 (No. 89) — Tyjae Spears, RB, Tulane

Lots of tempting choices here. I would consider grabbing Dayian Henley if I hadn’t already taken Campbell. I would select Tyler Scott or Jonathan Mingo if I hadn’t already taken Flowers. Cornerback Garrett Williams is really enticing. So, too, is Tennessee edge defender Byron Young.

Spears, though, is one of my favorite players in this class. I think he is easily the best running back left on the board, a big upgrade from Matt Breida, Gary Brightwell and Jashaun Corbin, and perhaps even long-term protection for Saquon Barkley. Maybe Spears is for the Giants what Tony Pollard has been for the Dallas Cowboys the past few years.

Waldman lists Spears as RB3 behind Bijan Robinson and Jahmyr Gills. Waldman compares him to Jamaal Charles:

Like Charles, Spears is a shifty, creative back with slippery power, a compact running style, and high effort at the point of contact with excellent mobility. Both backs work so close to much larger defenders and barely get touched that it appears as if they were toying with the opposition.

They are both breakaway runners with excellent acceleration, dynamic movement between the tackles and in the open field, and they break more tackles than you’d expect because they understand how to dictate their chain of movements on an opponent. Football is a combat sport and like all combat sports, dictating your rhythm on your opponent is the key to earning advantages in one-on-one matchups.

Charles lacked big-back power but because he could initiate a sequence of movements, the opposition was too busy reacting to the first move to anticipate the second move. This is how Charles could run directly at a defensive tackle or middle linebacker in the hole, initiate contact, and spin off them without getting wrapped up.

Spears illustrates a similar skill set. Combine his ability to aggressively dictate his rhythm on opponents with his explosive athletic ability and league’s movement to gap runs, and he’s going to thrive in the NFL.

Players passed on: Daiyan Henley, LB, Washington State; Jordan Battle, S, Alabama; Garrett Williams, CB, Syracuse; Tyler Scott, WR, Cincinnati; Byron Young, Edge, Tennessee; Gervon Dexter, DL, Florida; Jartavius Martin, S, Illinois; Jonathan Mingo, WR, Ole Miss

Round 4 (No. 128) — Olusegun Oluwatimi, C, Michigan

Schmitz, Tippmann and Wypler are gone. The draft is running out of starting-caliber center and I’m not waiting any longer to take one.

33rd Team scouts are higher on Oluwatimi than many, ranking him as the No. 2 center in the class. They write:

Oluwatimi is a productive player that has very good instincts. He has the power and strength to compete with big, strong players over his nose. He can shock with his hands and sustain blocks by anchoring well. He has good feet, balance and body control. He can get stood up by defenders but has the tools to consistently control people on the line of scrimmage ... Oluwatimi has toughness, size, strength, and instincts and is a good enough athlete. He should start at center early in his rookie season.

Players passed on: Eli Ricks, CB, Alabama; Michael Wilson, WR, Stanford; Ricky Stromberg, C, Arkansas

Round 5 (No. 160) — Moro Ojomo, DT, Texas

Even with the addition of veteran Rakeem Nunez-Roches and with D.J. Davidson returning from his torn ACL there is a need to add more depth and talent across the defensive line. The 6-2½, 292-pound Ojomo can do that.

In his draft guide, Dane Brugler writes:

Ojomo has a tough time creating plays because of his inefficiencies disengaging, but he is a stout run defender with pass rush upside because of his length and play strength. His best NFL fit might be as a read-and-react base end in an odd front.

Round 5 (No. 172) — Bryce Ford-Wheaton, WR, West Virginia

At this point in the draft teams are looking for traits and possibilities. Ford-Wheaton is a height/weight/speed/athleticism player worth taking a chance on.

Brugler writes:

Ford-Wheaton posted elite testing numbers at the scouting combine, and that athleticism flashes on tape, especially in jump ball situations or when he has a runway. However, he needs to sharpen his route angles and introduce more discipline to his approach. Overall, Ford-Wheaton must develop better confidence in his hands and routes to matchup in the NFL, but he is a rare height/length/speed athlete with potential to be a ball winner. He is a high-level developmental NFL prospect.

Round 6 (No. 209) — Viliami Fehoko, Edge, San Jose State

The Giants need options on the edge. The 6-4, 276-pound Fehoko had 22.0 sacks over the past three seasons.

Sports Info Solutions says:

Fehoko projects as a positional flex backup edge defender in a base 3-4 defensive scheme. He can play upright or with his hand in the dirt, and he can play any spot on the defensive line. He is best utilized as a pass rusher on 3rd downs, with limited upside in coverage. He has the size and strength to reduce down to a 3-tech as well in these 3rd down rushing sub packages.

Round 7 (No. 240) — Jake Haener, QB, Fresno State

Haener is QB6 on Brugler’s Big Board and QB4 for Waldman. I will be surprised if he is available this late, and couldn’t pass him up at this point.

Waldman writes:

Haener is the Brock Purdy of this class—a skilled passer lacking elite athletic traits for an early draft pick, but could emerge as a journeyman starter (or better) if and when he earns playing time. It doesn’t mean he’ll find a great team and deliver like Purdy when called upon. Still, there are similarities in style and skill.

Like Purdy, Haener’s arm talent is just shy of what’s expected for an NFL starter although I think Haener’s arm may be closer to that tier than Purdy’s. Also like Purdy, Haener has good feel in the pocket.

Based solely on their college film, Haener also has an edge over Purdy with reading coverage and making sound decisions. Purdy obviously played within his limits for the 49ers, which was a display that exceeded realistic expectations for him as a rookie. If Haener were in Purdy’s situation last year, I would have expected something similar.

A lot of scouts and NFL decision makers are going to like Haener’s tape but frown on his size and arm strength. Although the more athletic options with lower grades on my board will likely earn early Day Three picks before Haener, I expect Haener to work his way up a depth chart and into a backup role by 2025.

Round 7 (No. 243) — Myles Brooks, CB, Louisiana Tech

The hole in this mock is that Brooks is the only cornerback selected. In a deep cornerback class, choosing Spears over Williams in Round 3 ending up meaning missing out on all the top players.

At 6-1, 201 pounds Brooks has the size Wink Martindale would like. He is also reputed to be best as a press-man cornerback.

Brugler writes:

Brooks shows a natural feel in multiple coverages and is always peeking for the football. The undisciplined mistakes and misses in the run game must improve for him to earn the trust of an NFL coaching staff. Overall, Brooks doesn’t have high-level athletic traits and needs to become more buttoned up for the pro game, but his anticipation and ball skills should translate well. He projects best as a press-man cornerback at the next level.

Round 7 (No. 254) — Mohamoud Diabate, LB, Utah

A pure flier on athletic traits with a player who may end up as no more than a special teams contributor.

Brugler writes:

Diabate covers a lot of ground and has intriguing blitzing potential from various alignments. His read-and-react vs. the run is underdeveloped, and he struggles to diagnose route concepts (throws in his direction usually resulted in completions). Overall, Diabate is an aggressive and explosive linear athlete, but the game often moves too fast for him, leaving him out of position vs. the run and the pass. He projects as a developmental run-and-chase defender who will need to earn his roster spot on special teams.


Round 1 (No. 25) — TRADE!!!

In what I think is a scenario that could realistically unfold on Thursday night, the top four wide receivers, top four cornerbacks and safety Brian Branch are all off the board at No. 25. Bijan Robinson is still sitting there, and it is the Buffalo Bills who make the move up from No. 27. Full disclosure — I can’t help the fact that the silly simulator gave the Bills someone other than Robinson at 25.

Anyway, in addition to the 27th overall pick I got Buffalo’s fourth-round pick (No. 130) and a 2024 fifth-round pick for moving down two spots.

Round 1 (No. 27) — Emmanuel Forbes, CB, Mississippi State

By now, you guys know that I have made my peace with the fact that Forbes is 170 pounds (that’s what he weighed at his Pro Day).

Forbes has length at 6-foot-¾ inches with a 92nd percentile wingspan and speed with 92nd percentile numbers in the 40-yard dash and 10-yard split. He also has the ability to make plays on the ball and create turnovers — something no other Giant defensive back has shown consistently and something the Giants desperately need.

I also look at Forbes and see a player who should match up nicely with DeVonta Smith (6-foot, 170) and CeeDee Lamb (6-2, 189). Perhaps he would even be a match for Terry McLaurin (6-foot, 210), though that is more of a stretch.

Brugler writes:

His tape is a master class of spatial relationships and anticipation to make plays on the ball (led the team in both passes defended and interceptions each of his three seasons). Though he is known to freelance, he usually does it responsibly and plays on the balls of his feet to stay balanced and react to anything. Overall, Forbes’ rail-thin build and marginal play strength are concerns, along with his overaggressive tendencies, but he is light-footed and long with the mental processor and confidence to be an NFL playmaker. NFL teams willing to overlook his slightness will find a damn good player.

Players passed on: Cam Smith, CB, South Carolina; Kelee Ringo, CB, Georgia; Jalin Hyatt, WR, Tennessee; Bryan Bresee, DT, Clemson; Will McDonald IV, Edge, Iowa State; Calijah Kancey, DT, Pitt; John Michael Schmitz, C, Minnesota

Round 2 (No. 57) — Jack Campbell, LB, Iowa

This is the exact situation I faced in the ‘no trades’ mock. Both Schmitz and Tippmann are off the board and, for me, Campbell is clearly the best option.

In discussing the mock before it posted I actually messaged BBV’s Tony DelGenio and said that I was THRILLED that both mock drafts worked out this way.

That is not because I was happy to miss out on Schmitz or Tippmann. I wasn’t. It is because a week ago, when I traded up from No. 57 to No. 37 to have my choice of the two centers the general reaction was that surrendering the 89th and 160th picks to move up 20 spots for a center was a bad idea.

Well, if you think the Giants need to draft a starting center and think Schmitz and Tippmann are the top two options, I feel vindicated.

Guess what happened in this ‘with trades’ mock? The Seattle Seahawks took Schmitz at No. 37, the exact spot I traded up to a week ago. The Chicago Bears took Tippmann at No. 53. So, I sat at 57 and missed out on the top two centers in the class. Maybe moving up for a center in Round 2 isn’t such a terrible idea.

Players passed on: Josh Downs, WR, North Carolina; Julius Brents, CB, Kansas State; Steve Avila, IOL, TCU; Sam LaPorta, TE, Iowa; Cedric Tillman, WR, Tennessee

Round 3 (No. 89) — Luke Wypler, C, Ohio State

With Schmitz and Tippmann gone I am once again in a place where I need to be sure to get one of the remaining front-line center. Wypler is here, and I’m not messing around. compares Wypler to Garrett Bradbury:

Two-year starter at center for an explosive Ohio State offense. Wypler is undersized but highly athletic. His initial quickness gets him to the best angles, whether he’s cutting off linebackers or reaching and sealing outside zone blocks. He’s capable of pulling and leading the action in space, and is best suited for a move-based running attack. His lack of size and length will show up when working downhill, where struggles to sustain. He’s aware in pass protection but big bull rushers are a cause for concern. Wypler is a good technician and capable of becoming an average starter in the right scheme.

Players passed on: Sam LaPorta, TE, Iowa; Marvin Mims, Wr, Oklahoma; Tyler Scott, WR, Cincinnati; Sydney Brown, S, Illinois; Tank Dell, WR, Houston; Tyjae Spears, RB, Tulane

Round 3 (No. 99) — Tank Dell, WR, Houston

(via trade with San Francisco 49ers)

You might raise an eyebrow about the fact that I traded up for a 5-8⅜, 165-pound wide receiver. I happen to think that Dell, like Flowers in my ‘no trades’ mock, has many of the characteristics that Daboll and Kafka want to utilize in their offense.

After my trade down with Buffalo in Round 1, I had an extra fourth-round pick and 11 picks overall. I was looking at board where Dell, Marvin Mims of Oklahoma and Michael Wilson of Stanford were, in my view, the best three receivers left. I did not believe any of them was going to last until pick No. 128. So, I surrendered the 128th pick (Round 4), the 172nd pick (Round 5) and a 2024 fourth-rounder to move back into the bottom of the third round and make this selection.

I appreciate Dell’s game. Have you watched him use 93rd percentile 10-yard split and array of quick moves at the line of scrimmage to make defensive backs look silly?

Just listen to former NFL wide receiver Steve Smith Sr. He knows more about what it takes to succeed as a smaller wide receiver than any of us ever will:

Brugler writes:

Dell has blur speed along with the twitchy ease of movement and controlled burst to create separation in 1-on-1 match-ups. Although he is a smallish target and lacks tackle-breaking strength, he can run circles around defenders and plays with the competitive urgency of a much bigger player. Overall, Dell’s diminutive size and below average strength won’t be a fit for everyone, but he has quick hands and elite start-stop acceleration to create chunk plays short, intermediate and deep. He projects as a dynamic No. 3 or 4 wide receiver for an NFL offense while also handling punt return duties.

Players passed on: Marvin Mims, WR, Oklahoma; Michael Wilson, WR, Stanford; Tyjae Spears, RB, Tulane; Jordan Battle, S, Alabama

Round 4 (No. 130) — Kendre Miller, RB, TCU

(from Bills)

I passed on Tyjae Spears, one of my draft favorites, earlier. I am thrilled to land Miller here as an upgrade to the Giants’ running back depth behind/alongside Barkley.

33rd Team has the 6-foot, 215-pound Miller as RB4. They write:

Miller is a three-down back with vision, competitive toughness, and a second gear to go the distance. He should be a solid day-two pick with a chance to start early in the right situation.

Players passed on: Eli Ricks, CB, Alabama; Zach Evans, RB, Mississippi; Michael Wilson, WR, Stanford

Round 5 (No. 160) — Jerrod Clark, DT, Coastal Carolina

By the board, this is a reach. Clark is the 206th-ranked player on the NFL Mock Draft Database big board. In my recent podcast with Chad Reuter of, though, Reuter said he believes Clark is a fifth- or sixth-round player. The Giants need run-stuffing depth to take some of the pressure off Dexter Lawrence, and the 6-3, 334-pound Clark should provide that.

Brugler writes:

Clark plays well on his feet to eat up space and uses his length to push the pocket. Stronger than he is explosive, his below-average leverage and hand usage will keep him glued to NFL blockers. Clark relies more on his raw strength than technical skill to win trench battles, but his package of size, length and foot quickness is worthy project for an NFL defensive line coach. He has the tools to become a rotational NFL nose tackle.

Players passed on: Andrew Vorhees, IOL, USC; Owen Pappoe, LB, Auburn; Colby Wooden, DT, Auburn

Round 6 (No. 209) — Bryce Ford-Wheaton, WR, West Virginia

See what I wrote above. I just can’t pass of Ford-Wheaton’s height/weight/speed combination at this point in the draft.

Round 7 (No. 240) — SirVocea Dennis, LB, Pittsburgh

At 6-1, 226 pounds, Dennis is a run-and-chase linebacker who might only be a sub-package or special teams player. At pick No. 240, those thing have value.

Brugler writes:

With his agility and play recognition, Dennis has the range to cover every inch of the field vs. the run and in zone coverage (can get better in man-to-man). Though he is a strong form tackler, he lacks knock-back striking power, and he can be too easily overpowered and engulfed in the tackle box when his take-on timing isn’t precise. Overall, Dennis lacks desired size for every-down duties in the NFL, but he is fast-flowing with the eyes and tackling skills that lead to NFL production. He should be an immediate special teamer who can carve out a role on defense.

Round 7 (No. 243) — Max Duggan, QB, TCU

Duggan and Tyler Bagent were both here. I took Duggan simply because of the higher level of competition he has played.

Brugler writes:

Duggan is a passionate player with the arm strength, toughness and escapability to make plays with his legs and through the air. Though he showed growth in 2022, he isn’t a functionally-sound passer, and his sporadic field reads and accuracy are a high hurdle to clear at the next level. Overall, Duggan’s pocket skills and downfield passing lack the necessary refinement for the NFL game, but he is a courageous competitor with dual-threat talent and calm confidence. He is an intriguing project for a patient NFL coaching staff.

Round 7 (No. 254) — DJ Johnson, Edge, Oregon

I’m looking for traits, and with a 4.49 40-yard dash (97th percentile) and pass-rush potential, Johnson has them.

Brugler writes:

A member of Bruce Feldman’s “Freaks List,” Johnson is balanced at the point of attack and flashes the ability to leverage the edge. He is explosive through his lower body to pin his ears back and go, but he relies on speed and strength as a rusher and needs to introduce more thought and setup in his attack. Overall, Johnson has only average instincts and needs to round out his game, but he is long and explosive with a motor that runs hot. He has the physical profile of a scheme versatile NFL player and offers upside despite his age.


Which of these two draft scenarios do you prefer for the Giants?

This poll is closed

  • 24%
    Mock 1 — No trades
    (464 votes)
  • 75%
    Mock 2 — With trades
    (1401 votes)
1865 votes total Vote Now