Double G Sports NFL Mock Draft: New York Giants 1.0
The NFL Combine is taking over Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis this weekend from March 2-5. All eyes will be on the prospects to see if they can raise their stock in the NFL Draft this coming April.
One of the teams who will be looking to bounce back from a poor 2017 season is the New York Giants under new head coach Pat Shurmur and general manager Dave Gettleman. As for any under-performing team, the NFL Draft is the best way to start your turnaround. And the Giants have just that, as they hold the No. 2 overall pick in this year’s draft, as well as early picks in each round.
Here is Double G Sports’ first NFL Mock Draft for the New York Giants.
Round 1 (No. 2 Pick)
Quenton Nelson, OG, Notre Dame
Yes, the popular talk for months has been which quarterback the Giants will take with the second overall pick. However, I believe New York will still stick with Davis Webb as the future starting quarterback.
The Giants could take Saquon Barkley as well, but there is one thing that has been lacking on the team for years, and that’s an offensive line.
Notre Dame guard Quenton Nelson has received plenty of praise from scouts and evaluators in recent weeks. Standing at six-foot-five and weighing 339 lbs, the Red Bank Catholic High School alum has extraordinary power at the guard position at Notre Dame, who is great in run blocking and can hold his own in pass protection. Nelson has even drawn comparisons former Dallas Cowboy great Larry Allen.
Offensive guards rarely get drafted this high, but in order to get the offense going, the Giants need help on the offensive line. Quenton Nelson can become a true difference maker on the line of scrimmage.
Round Two (No. 34 Pick)
Sony Michel, RB, Georgia
While the Giants pass on Barkley in the first round, they do it because the running back draft class is so deep in 2018. With the second pick in the second round, the Giants do address the running back need with Sony Michel of Georgia.
Michel played a key role with the Bulldogs this past, who’s play helped lead them to the CFP National Championship Game. Rushing for 1,227 yards and 16 touchdowns on 156 carries, Michel shows great burst and acceleration during and after cuts. Not only that, but he can use his muscular build to his advantage when dropping the shoulder.
The Giants have been missing an well-faceted running back in recent memory, and Michel certainly fits the bill.
Round Three (No. 66 Pick)
Oren Burks, ILB, Vanderbilt
The Giants’ defensive scheme is changing to a 3-4 defense under new defensive coordinator James Bettcher. With this new scheme, the role of the inside linebacker is crucial.
Oren Burks can fit that bill, as he has shown some NFC scouts that he has the quickness and awareness to effectively play the position at the professional level. In his senior season, Burks recorded 82 total tackles (including seven for a loss), three passes defended, and one interception.
Burks could play a key role on the Giants defense, where he could eventually be groomed as their inside linebacker of the future.
Round Four (No. 98 Pick)
Brandon Parker, OT, North Carolina A&T
Here we are again, back at the offensive line. Despite the need being addressed in the first round, there’s never enough room for more depth.
Brandon Parker could help turn around the reputation of the Giants offensive line. Parker is six-foot-seven, weighing 303 lbs, and has a 35.38 inch arm length, which could help protect the outside of the pocket. The offensive tackle impressed at the Senior Bowl, which helped raise his stock. It helps that the Giants own the second pick of each round. Expect New York to take Parker, who could possibly replace struggling left tackle Ereck Flowers.
Round Four (No. 135 Pick)
Jeff Holland, DE, Auburn
It is unknown how much longer Jason Pierre-Paul will be in the Giant’s future plans. So why not bring in a defensive end prospect as a future starter?
Holland had a strong 2017 season with the Auburn Tigers, posting 45 total tackles (12.5 for a loss), 9.5 sacks, and four forced fumbles. While he does not have the prototypical size for an NFL defensive end, he makes up for it with his speed and his ability to get to the quarterback.
Round Five (No. 139 Pick)
D.J. Reed, CB, Kansas State
New York’s cornerback position is a bit of a question mark heading into the 2018 season. Embattled corner Eli Apple is entering his third season on a “clean slate” under Shurmur’s coaching regime, but his troubles from last season have raised some red flags. Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie could be a potential cut to free up some cap space.
The Giants can address this by drafting Reed, who is a bit undersized for a corner, but makes up for it in speed, to prevent separation from the receiver. In 2017, Reed recorded 47 total tackles, nine passes defended, four intereptions, and two fumble recoveries. Reed can fit in on special teams, specifically on kick returns, where he averaged 14.9 yards per return and scored a touchdown in 2017.
Round Six (No. 171 Pick)
Kahlil McKenzie Jr., DT, Tennessee
Yes, the Giants have Damon Harrison as the starting nose tackle in Bettcher’s new scheme. However, you can never have enough depth.
Kahlil McKenzie was a five-star recruit for Tennessee and many draft experts were surprised that the junior would declare for the NFL Draft. With Jeremy Pruitt accepting the Volunteers head coaching gig, many expected McKenzie to take his game to the next level in his senior year. However, the defensive tackle is taking the leap, where he is expected to be taken in the later rounds.
McKenzie does have some question marks, but he does have the movement skills that make him effective in the run prevention game.