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New York Giants Draft Philosophy: Breaking Down the First Round

March 31st, 2011 at 4:05 PM
By Kyle Langan

With the NFL in the midst of a damaging work stoppage, this coming NFL Draft will be one of the most scrutinized drafts in NFL history. 

17 of the top 2010 NFL Draft prospects appear for a photo call atop the Marquee of Radio City Music Hall in New York, April 21, 2010. The 2010 NFL Draft will be held April 22 at Radio City Music Hall. REUTERS/Mike Segar (UNITED STATES – Tags: SPORT FOOTBALL)

It will be critical for each and every squad to obtain as many blue chip players as possible who are ready to contribute whenever they are asked to eventually take the field when the lockout is indeed lifted. 

The New York Giants have been connected with a number of players with the #19 overall pick, but none more than Anthony Costonzo, Mike Pouncey, and Akeem Ayers. There are a number of sleeper players such as Muhammad Wilkerson, Mark Ingram, Corey Liuget, and Aldon Smith who have been mentioned as possibilities for the Giants as well. 

The debate currently raging among Giants fans seems to be about whether linebacker or offensive line is the bigger need.

The fact of the matter is, the Giants have more talented players on the offensive line than they do at linebacker, but they are either getting old fast or have suffered serious injuries. At linebacker, the team is in serious need of some athleticism.

I fully believe that the Giants will look to upgrade the linebacker position during this coming draft, but not in the first round. There are a number of prospects such as Bruce Carter, Greg Jones, and Martez Wilson whom may be available in later rounds who would all be a welcome infusion of athleticism in the current linebacker corps.

The way I see it, Mike Pouncey and Anthony Costonzo are two of the cleanest- most NFL ready prospects in the entire draft. In a time of uncertainty, it is important that the team obtain blue chip players, regardless of position.

Whether the Giants opt to draft a center or a tackle, they will provide great competition at their respective positions in 2011 and be set to take over for one of the aging players on the line in the near future. Eventually the Giants have to begin to prepare for the future of their offensive line, and there no better time than now. 

In my past few mock drafts, I have changed my pick for the Giants in the first round a number of times, and once again I am changing my mind. 

I believe the Giants will draft Mike Pouncey out of Florida.

According to Pouncey himself on Sirius XM radio with Ralph Vacciano, Pouncey has had "a lot" of contact with The Giants.

While Jerry Reese is the general manager, he invests a lot in the convictions of his coaching staff come draft time. With both Tom Coughlin and Pat Flaherty meeting with Pouncey before and after his pro- day, I consider Pouncey a serious candidate.

Tags: Akeem Ayers, Aldon Smith, Football, Mark Ingram, Mike Pouncey, New York, New York Giants, NFL, NFL Draft

10 Responses to “New York Giants Draft Philosophy: Breaking Down the First Round”

  1. Matthew Kiernankujo says:

    No doubt. I would be shocked if we passed on either of them at #19 if they are available. You hit it on the head: drafted players can’t even look at a playbook until this thing is settled. So conversion projects have to be passed on in favor of “sure things.” And there are few things as sure as an interior lineman. I would take Costanzo over Pouncey because it’s harder to find quality tackles outside the 1st or 2nd round, whereas guards and centers can be had in the mid or late rounds, or UDFAs. Besides, I would take Wisniewski and Kirkpatrick over Pouncey as centers anyway.

  2. Matthew Kiernankujo says:

    Whenever Coughlin retires, I want his replacement to be someone from the coaching staff of either the Ravens, Steelers or Bears. Teams with solid, blue-chip style defenses. Linebacker guys. Our d-line is set up pretty well forth next 4-5 years and should only need tinkering. On the other hand, our linebackers are endemically bad and have been for ages! This has got to be an area of focus going forward. If it’s not at the HC level, than certainly at the DC level.

  3. Matthew Kiernankujo says:

    Bob_Glauber: If 2010 work rules apply in NFL next season, Giants DT Barry Cofield says he’ll consider asking for a trade rather than play on 1-yr tender.

    •  Krow says:

      Let’s be honest. When that trade to the Saints fell through I think we all knew he was going to be an a$$hole come contract time. This is exactly what we should have expected, and I think seals his fate. Hasta la vista Barry.

  4.  Krow says:

    Pouncey wouldn’t surprise me… and I wouldn’t be disappointed either. Though I still contend that he’s more of a future pick than an immediate help. I also think that Ayers isn’t athletic enough to warrant a #19 pick. A trade back would not shock me if there’s a QB on the board that someone wants.

  5.  plektor says:

    You’re making a lot of sense.

    I wouldn’t draft a G in the 1st round, and Pouncey isn’t a C by far. So that leaves us with Castonzo and then we better hope that a good LB is still available at 52.
    We’ve been drafting LBs late (4th round mainly), expecting them to perform magically out of nowhere and ended up with Kiehl, Goff, Wilkerson … We need to change the way we draft LBs so 1st or 2nd round seems like the way to go.

    •  Krow says:

      Except that when we do we don’t seem to know how to develop them. Let’s take Clint Sintim. Here’s the scouting report…

      So what happens? First off he’s a project. OK, we knew that. But he sits the bench almost all rookie year. Then we start with the ‘has to contribute on special teams’ routine. Which is lame since, a) he’s a #2 pick and should be groomed to start… and b) our special teams are terrible year in and year out.

      It seems to me that we didn’t do everything we could to make him a success. Very few snaps… not a lot of positive feedback… it’s almost like a set-up-to-fail. Of course that’s not true… we all, including the coaches, want him to play great. That leaves us with the nagging suspicion that our coaches don’t know how to use or develop a linebacker.

      If that’s the case then drafting all but the most ‘NFL ready’ prospect is extremely problematic.

  6.  Krow says:

    But in the end it’ll be someone we didn’t expect. We can gauge how the need/value ratio will play out. I don’t see Ayers as the guy. So unless we take another conversion project LB won’t be the selection. The value seems to be OT. And Costanzo would be hard to resist… especially given the BC thing. But if he’s gone then OL’s far from a lock. Pouncey is too high at #19… too low at #52. That makes for a dilemma. With Cofield having gone crazy a DL is not out of the question. A cover DB would help too.

    Tough year to predict.

  7.  Krow says:

    can gauge = can’t gauge

  8.  Krow says:

    For the record… I think… if Costanzo is there that we take him. My only concern is that he’ll go before our pick. There’s a good chance that will happen.

    I also like Greg Jones… 3rd/4th. A little short, but a gamer. Ready to play.

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