New York Giants fans will hear a lot on conjecture heading into the NFL Draft.
There are several areas of need, as evidenced by the New York Giants (5-11) woeful record this past season. The 2018 NFL Draft was top heavy in offensive talent, and most, if not all of the early draft picks look like legitimate NFL players.
At first glance, this draft looks to be more stocked in defensive talent, not necessarily a bad thing, if the G-Men manage their assets effectively. Notably, last year, Big Blue general manager Dave Gettleman eschewed taking a top quarterback prospect in favor of running back Saquon Barkley.
Gettleman also opined that he wasn’t enamored of the 2018 quarterback class over Barkley, even though USC product Sam Darnold was available to the G-Men at No. 2 overall. While Barkley is a solid pick, quarterbacks are always in demand, so it may be decision that haunts the New York Giants moving forward.
That’s because the 2019 quarterback class is weak and got weaker with the announcement that University of Oregon signal-caller Justin Herbert will be returning to school in 2019. The Herbert decision may remind folks of Matt Leinhert’s choice several years ago, which didn’t turn out well for him or the Arizona Cardinals.
Time will tell, but Ohio State edge rusher Nick Bosa seems to becoming the consensus No. 1 overall pick. Of the five teams in front of the New York Giants, only one may have an interest in a quarterback right now. That team is the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, although the Oakland Raiders may change their tune, depending upon how head coach Jon Gruden feels about Derek Carr.
Ohio State quarterback Dwayne Haskins gets plenty of ink as the acclaimed top QB in this draft. But the buyer better be aware as Haskins padded his stats in victories over the likes of Rutgers and Tulane, and he completed just 56 percent of his passes in a close win over Penn State.
Former New York Giants general manager Jerry Reese routinely was outmaneuvered at the draft. For Gettleman, it’s hard being outfoxed at No. 2, but he could get boxed in with the sixth selection.
Right now, the play may be to release cornerback Janoris Jenkins, as according to Spotrac, that move would free up a little less than half of his $14.75 million salary for 2019. Then Big Blue could reinvest the money saved into an offensive lineman, pass rusher, safety or linebacker on the free agent market.
According to CBS Sports Draft Tracker, the two top cornerbacks available are both from the SEC: Greedy Williams (LSU) and Deandre Baker (Georgia). They could team one of these guys with supplemental draft pick San Beal, and roll the dice with youth at the position.
Despite coming on board with the G-Men in July, Beal missed the entire 2018 NFL campaign with a shoulder injury. Getting Beal back onto the field will be one of the keys to reviving a moribund defense in 2019.