New York Mets 40-Man Roster Overview: Jose Lobaton

After starting the season off the New York Mets 40-man roster, Jose Lobaton was called into action with the injuries to Travis d’Arnaud and Kevin Plawecki.

Lobaton’s journey to the big leagues began at the age of 17 when he signed with the San Diego Padres. After seven years bouncing around the minor leagues, he finally made his debut in 2009 with the Padres. The Tampa Bay Rays claimed him off waiver 17 at-bats and had three hits with the Padres. Lobaton’s career involved him bouncing around from team to team as most backup catchers do in their career.

He played the rest of the 2009 and 2010 seasons in the Rays minor league system. Lobaton returned to the big leagues in 2011, but still struggled to find success with the bat. He only hit .118 in 2011 and showed his defense would be what kept him in the big leagues. He had an above average 30 percent caught stealing rate in his small sample size.

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Lobaton’s Career in Tampa

2012 was Lobaton’s first real season of earning a job at the big league level where he played in 69 games from the end of May. Lobaton hit .222 and had an impressive .323 on base percentage. He played 100 games for the only time of his in 2013 and hit .249 with a career high seven home runs. Lobaton also drilled a walkoff home run in the ALDS against Boston Red Sox closer Koji Uehara.

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In the offseason the Rays traded Lobaton along with Felipe Rivero and Drew Vettleson to Washington Nationals for Nathan Karns. Lobaton found a nice home in Washington where he spent four years as the team’s backup catcher. He only hit .210 and played in 200 games over his four season in Washington.

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The Mets signed Lobaton to a minor league deal before Spring Training and was expected to spend a majority of the year in Triple-A. After the Mets lost Travis d’Arnaud and Kevin Plawecki for an extended period of time, he was called up to assume the everyday catcher role. The Mets have thought about acquiring another catcher but he seems to be the one who will have the job for now.

New York Giants Draft Saquon Barkley With Number Two Pick

With the second pick in the NFL Draft, the New York Giants selected Penn State running back Saquon Barkley.

Reports from around the team started leaning towards Barkley over the past couple of days, as quarterbacks such as Sam Darnold and Josh Rosen fell out of favor with the Giants organization, and the pick is now official after Cleveland passed on Barkley to select Baker Mayfield with the first pick.

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Barkley is from The Bronx and has stayed relatively close to home for college. He finished his three year career at Penn State with 3,483 rushing yards and 1,195 receiving yards, as well as 51 total touchdowns.

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He also finished with an average of 5.7 yards per attempt, and scored twice as a return man for the Nittany Lions last year. Now, Barkley will play for his hometown and will be one of the cornerstones of the Giants team next season as the team rebuilds.

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NFL 32-Team Mock Draft – Giants Grab Top Rated Player

We are finally here! The NFL draft is upon us, so it is only right I submit yet another mock draft that will be completely way off base. Hopefully this will be one of the most accurate mocks you will have seen over the past couple months.

  • Cleveland Browns: Baker Mayfield-QB- Oklahoma

The Browns get their quarterback of the future with the number one overall pick. Yes, I believe Mayfield will be the Browns choice as they decide not to go with Darnold or Allen.

  1.    New York Giants: Saquan Barkley-RB, Penn State

There will be a lot of Giant fans upset that they did not draft a quarterback but a couple of 50+ yard touchdowns early in the season will surely quiet the critics.

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  1.     New York Jets: Josh Rosen-QB, UCLA

Rosen’s personality, New York City, the Jets. Yes what can go wrong. Hopefully for Jet fans they get their QB of the future and end the turnstile at that position.

  1.    Cleveland Browns: Bradley Chubb-DE, NC State

The Browns will bookend Myles Garrett with Bradley Chubb. The Browns are going to be a dangerous team moving forward.

  1.    Denver Broncos: Sam Darnold-QB, USC

The Broncos get what many believe to be the best QB in the draft. He may sit a year behind Keenum but if Denver struggles or he outshines Keenum in preseason we may see Darnold sooner rather than later.

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  1.    Indianapolis Colts: Quentin Nelson-G-Notre Dame

Keeping Andrew Luck upright and healthy should be priority number one. Nelson will be an impact starter day 1.

  1. Tampa Bay Buccaneers: Derwin James-S, Florida State

Last year everyone expected big things from the Bucs. Maybe we were all a year early. Adding to the defense with James may help put people back on the bandwagon. If Winston is better than this team can be dangerous.

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  1. Chicago Bears: Roquan Smith-LB, Georgia

The Bears defense took great strides last year. Adding Smith to this defense will help take some pressure off of Trubisky.

  1.   San Francisco 49ers:Denzel Ward-CB-Ohio State

The 49ers get the best CB in the draft. Wide Receiver and linebacker were also possibilities here but passing on Ward would be a mistake. He will be able to learn from one of the games best CB’s.

  1.   Oakland Raiders: Minkah Fitzpatrick -DB, Alabama

Gruden will love the versatility that Minkah will bring to the defense. Adding another impact player to the defensive side of the ball is a must.

  1. Miami Dolphins: Tremaine Edmunds- LB, Virginia Tech

Miami gets possibly the best athlete in the draft with Edmunds. He may need some work but he can become a big playmaker in the league.

  1. Buffalo Bills: Josh Allen-QB, Wyoming

The Bills get their QB and they do not even have to trade up. Josh Allen drops into their lap. He will not beat out Mccarron year one but this could be a steal a couple of years from now.

  1. Washington Redskins: Vita Vea-DT, Washington

The Redskins get the best run stuffer in the draft which will try and help against the likes of Elliott and Barkley. Great pick up for them.

  1. Green Bay Packers: Marcus davenport-DE, Texas-San Antonio

The Packers will need to add to the pass rush in this draft and sitting at 14 there is no better option than Marcus Davenport.

  1. Arizona Cardinals: Lamar Jackson-QB, Louisville

The Cardinals signed Sam Bradford in the off-season but he is not the future for the Cardinals. Jackson can learn for a year before getting the starting job in Arizona.

  1. Baltimore Ravens: Frank Ragnow-C, Arkansas

The Ravens lost their starting Center in free agency so they draft a better replacement. He will come in and be the starter day 1.

  1. San Diego Chargers:Da’Ron Payne-DT, Alabama

A monster of a human being is just what the Chargers needed to add to their line. This addition will fly under a lot of peoples radar but he will be a steal for the Chargers here.

  1. Seattle Seahawks:Harold Landry-DE, Boston College

The Seahawks traded away Michael bennett this off-season and although they have other holes to fill, they add a pass rusher.

  1. Dallas Cowboys: Calvin Ridley-WR, Alabama

The Cowboys released Dez Bryant so you have to figure they are targeting a wide receiver to replace him. They get potentially the best WR in the draft.

  1. Detroit Lions: Derrius Guice-RB, LSU

One thing Matthew Stafford has never had with Detroit is a consistent running game. They added Blount in the off-season but he is not the long term answer. Guice will be.

  1. Cincinnati Bengals: Taven Bryan-DL, Florida

The Bengals can go offensive line her because they do need help in that area, instead the decide to go defensive line with Payne.

  1. Buffalo Bills: Courtland Sutton-WR, SMU

The Bills are going to pair Josh Allen with, in my opinion, the best wide receiver in the draft. Hopefully these two can build a strong rapport early on.

23.New England Patriots: Mike Mcglinchey-OT, Notre Dame

The Patriots lost Nate Solder in free agency and replace him with Mcglinchey from Notre Dame. Can potentially turn out to be a steal this late in the first round.

  1. Carolina Panthers:Josh Jackson-CB, Iowa

Ever since Josh Norman left the Panthers their cornerback play has been one of the worst in the league. They will hope this pick addresses that need.

  1. Tennessee Titans: Leighton Vander Esch-LB, Boise St.

The Titans will look to replace veteran linebacker Avery Williamson. It will be difficult to match his production but Vander Esch may be good enough to do so and better.

  1. Atlanta Falcons: Will Hernandez-G, Texas-El Paso

Sitting at 26 in the draft the Falcons go with the best player left on the board. Hernandez is a mauler and will compete to start right away.

  1. New Orleans Saints: Hayden Hurst-TE, South Carolina

Coby Fleener has not turned into the player most expected him to when he went to New Orleans. They will look to add another great tight end with Drew Brees to hopefully get them over the hump.

  1. Pittsburgh Steelers:Justin Reid-S, Stanford

No he is not Troy polamalu but he is an upgrade over what the steelers currently have. If this defense can catch up to this offense than watch out.

  1. Jacksonville Jaguars: Rashaan Evans-LB, Alabama

The Jaguars had the best defense in the NFL last year so what do they do? Add to it. Evans will be a great fit and should be able to earn playing time right away.

  1. Minnesota Vikings: Isaiah Wynn-OL, Georgia

Love this pick for the Vikings. If Cook can come back to 100% than the sky’s the limit for this team.

31.New England Patriots: Carlton Davis-CB, Auburn

If only a CB was able to make a play in the Super Bowl last year for the Patriots we may be looking at a different Super Bowl Champion. Adding Davis should boost their secondary.

  1. Philadelphia Eagles: Ronald Jones-RB, USC

In somewhat of a surprising move the Eagles add RB Ronald Jones. He is a talented runner and can be utilized in the passing game as well. He will fit right into their rotation.

Report: New York Giants Looking To Trade No. 2 Overall Pick – But Why?

The New York Giants are only about four hours away from making a decision that will change the course of the franchise for years to come, and the choice lands in the lap of new general manager, Dave Gettleman.

According to Dianna Russini, a source within the Giants’ organization is under the impression that they are looking to shop the pick to increase the value they take away from the draft. While this method could be very beneficial, Big Blue might be forced to trade out of blue chip player territory, which ultimately could be costly.

“Spoke to a Giants source. He said the feeling in this building today is the Giants are looking to trade down. When I asked why? He said “we have a ton of needs.”

Some prime suspects in a potential trade down would be the Buffalo Bills and Denver Broncos. If the Cleveland Browns take a quarterback with the first-overall pick, which they are expected to do, it might force the hand of a QB needy team. This would put the Giants in great position to exploit the want of a team in need of a franchise signal caller.

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The best option for the Giants would be to trade back with the Broncos, who would deliver them the No. 5 overall pick, keeping them in blue chip player territory. Options at No. 5 would potentially be Saquon Barkley, Bradley Chubb, Quenton Nelson, and others. It’s possible a top quarterback prospect falls right into the lap of New York, which would give them unparalleled value.

The Giants would likely add several early round picks from a trade-back, and according to Russini’s source, there are several holes to fill on both sides of the ball. This would give them the ability to draft an edge rusher, running back, linebacker, and offensive lineman. A profound influx of youth and talent with minimal precautions on the salary cap.

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Working theory:

It’s possible the Giants decided to cut WR Brandon Marshall to open up more cap space for their draft picks. Big Blue only has six picks in the draft, which won’t require too much cap-space to cover. After cutting Marshall they would have more than enough if they decided to add additional picks through a trade-back.

Lawrence Taylor Praises Saquon Barkley Ahead Of NFL Draft

The New York Giants are one of many teams interested in selecting Penn State Saquon Barkley in the NFL draft today. Along with a good chunk of the fan-base wanting the stud back, Giants legend Lawrence Taylor also praises the young athlete, and thinks he is a potential Hall of Fame player.

Taylor stated that Barkley could “absolutely” join him and others in the HOF, wearing gold jackets for the rest of their lives.

“Yes, absolutely [he could be a Hall of Famer],” Taylor told the New York Post. “I’ve seen some of highlights and stuff, he’s got some great speed, got great leg strength. And it looks like he makes good running decisions when he makes ’em.

“Out of that draft there’s gonna be several Gold Jacket Guys, the problem is trying to figure which ones they are.”

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Does Saquon Barkley fit the bill for the Giants?

Giants’ GM Dave Gettleman stated earlier this off-season that he would be looking to take the player that has the highest chances of wearing a gold jacket at the end of his career. It could be Barkley, or it could be a quarterback. One things for sure — he’s already received acceptance from the best defensive player in the history of the NFL.

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The Giants hold the No. 2 overall pick in the draft, and depending on what the Cleveland Browns do at No. 1, Gettleman will have his fair share of choices among the blue chip players in the draft. Players such as Barkley, Sam Darnold, Josh Rosen, and Bradley Chubb, have all been mocked to the Giants leading up to the draft.

Rumors are now circulating that the Browns might be looking to take Oklahoma standout Baker Mayfield with the No. 1 pick, which would surely shake up the draft right off the bat. The Giants would have the cream of the crop at QB, and Barkley sitting in their lap.

The question is: What will they do?

 

Should The New York Giants Take A Risk On Pass Rusher Arden Key?

The New York Giants will eventually need to fill the pass rushing production that they lost when Jason Pierre-Paul made the switch to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, and this draft could provide a chance to do just that.

However, it doesn’t look likely that the team will trade back from the second pick and take a pass rusher. If they do take a quarterback or running back at number two, the second round is where they’ll have to look for a defensive lineman.

Arden Key is a first round talent, but could fall to the Giants pick near the beginning of the second round. His draft stock has been up and down, but Key is still considered one of the best pass rushers this year despite his drop in  performance last season.

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He only recorded four sacks, compared to 11 in 2016, but played three fewer games. Still, he has the skill-set that a lot of NFL teams want. He fits the average size for the edge rusher position and has the versatility to play as a defensive end or outside linebacker.

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His inside rip move has been praised too, but he also has the speed and flexibility to beat tackles to the outside before adjusting to get to the backfield. His 2016 season had a lot of analysts talking about him as an upper first round pick, but after last year, there’s more question marks. Key’s off the field problems are a bigger deal than his statistical slowdown, and we don’t have the details on what those problems are, exactly.

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Key had to take a leave of absence from LSU and hasn’t commented publicly on the reason why. He’s told teams privately, but since the information isn’t public knowledge, it’s hard to predict if his problems from college will follow him into the NFL or not. There’s varying reports and some believe that NFL scouts have accepted his reasons, while Key has also been compared to Cowboys defensive end Randy Gregory, who struggled with drug tests after Dallas took a risk on him.

Should the Giants draft Key with the first pick of the second round, if he falls that far? On one hand, Key would be a major steal if he pans out the way draft analysts thought he would in 2016. The Giants are trying to replace Jason Pierre-Paul and good pass rushers usually come at a premium price in today’s NFL.

However, it’s not so certain that Key will reach his potential.

Unless the Giants have the full details of his off the field problems, and are confident that they can be worked around, Key is a dangerous pick that could follow the same path as Randy Gregory and end up not seeing the field very much. The details aren’t out there, so we the fans will just have to wait and see how the player pans out, but there’s safer options for the Giants to take at the edge rusher position in this year’s draft, with potentially the same amount of future production.

Key Takeaways From Giants Voluntary Minicamp

New York Giants, Sterling Shepard

New York Giants football is back!

As the Giants conclude their second day of voluntary minicamp, let’s take a look at the key takeaways and notable players from these limited practices.

Takeaways:

  • Odell Beckham Jr. is in the building
  • Though limited to mostly rehab still, Odell is showing his maturity by being here for voluntary workouts

  • Olivier Vernon, Romeo Okwara, Kareem Martin, and Jordan Williams all were working out as linebackers
    • Vernon on standing up vs. having his hand in the dirt, “It’s nothing really different for me, I’ve done that in the past.”
  • The starting offensive line consists of LT Nate Solder, LG Patrick Omameh, C Brett Jones, RG Jon Halapio, and RT Chad Wheeler
  • Ereck Flowers is still not at the facility, making a possible trade seem more and more likely

  • Damon Harrison has not been to the facility, Head Coach Pat Shurmur does not seem bothered by this.

  • Jonathon Stewart was the “starting” running back, but split carries with Wayne Gallman
  • Paul Perkins is hurt once again, being spotted on the sideline with his arm in a sling

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Notable Players

Davis Webb has demonstrated more of the hard work and desire to learn that he showed last season. Head Coach Pat Shurmur seemed to have nothing negative to say about his current back up quarterback. Not only does he seem to have his head coach’s support, he has the support of his teammates as well.

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Sterling Shepard seems to be embracing the new system that Pat Shurmur is in. You can really see how he has grown since his rookie season, and I expect him to continue to mature and improve on the field.

Linebacker Derrick Matthews caught some attention at practice grabbing the only interception of the day, on a tipped pass. He was signed from the practice squad at the end of 2017. For a unit that is looking for more depth at the linebacker position, Matthews could have a chance to solidify himself on the field moving forward.

Eli Apple and Janoris Jenkins look to lead the Giants secondary back to its glory of 2016, when they were identified as the NYPD (New York Pass Defence). Apple seems focused and ready to move on from last season, and so does Jenkins.

Here are some nice tosses by Davis Webb – showing off his accuracy and touch over the top and in stride to Jerell Adams.

Two pretty passes from the sophomore quarterback. Reports also say he overthrew a few passes, which may be bi-product of lack of chemistry or rust after the off-season (not playing with a full team).

Manning Opens Up About Davis Webb And Shurmur Makes Interesting Comment

The New York Giants are enjoying a short voluntary mini-camp awarded to new head coaches ahead of the NFL draft.

A majority of the Giants’ player have attended the camp – beginning to familiarize themselves with the new regime and coaching staff.

Franchise quarterback Eli Manning will return as the 2018 starter, and at 37 years-old some may begin to think he’s on the last leg of his tenure in the NFL.

According to Eli, that premise is nonsense:

“37 is not old. I think 37 is young. It’s all about perspective.”

Head coach Pat Shurmur stated this week that Manning is the most in-shape 37 year-old he’s ever seen, which only attests to the longevity of his playing career and durability. Shurmur’s vote of confidence surely promotes the future of Manning with the Giants, but it shouldn’t detter the organization from taking a quarterback in the first-round of the draft.

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Manning also stated:

“Our focus is on the minicamp and trying to build unity and learn this offense…come next week we’ll have some new draft picks and free agents.”

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The OTA’s also represent a stellar opportunity for sophomore quarterback Davis Webb to showcase his abilities in-front of the new coaches. He has trained all offseason and studied the playbook to extreme rates, according to Sterling Shepard.

When asked about Webb’s progress with the Giants, Manning expressed major confidence in the young signal caller:

“Davis Webb works extremely hard. He likes watching film and drawing up plays…on the field, in the film room and in the weight room. He has the right mentality.”

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People will say his teammates are expected to say good things, and they likely are, but should we assume they’re lying when they break down his work ethic and passion for the game? Probably not.

Pat Shurmur said something interesting during Wednesday’s press conference:

“Every player we pick in the draft is going to help us win. I’m really excited about the NFL draft. I’m very confident we’re going to pick players that are going to help us in every round.”

Does this mean that they won’t be selecting a quarterback? Realistically, a new QB would sit at least one-year behind Manning, so he wouldn’t necessarily be contributing to wins. Maybe I’m looking to far into this? Or maybe I’m not… Hmm.

 

Giants’ Pre-Draft OTA’s Could Be The Deciding Factor For NFL Draft Selection

While sophomore quarterback Davis Webb running around in shorts and slinging passes without any pressure doesn’t depict much, it could have an influence on who the New York Giants pick in the NFL draft.

Head coach Pat Shurmur will have an up close look at his young signal caller, but in the end, it shouldn’t make a difference on who they pick on Thursday. Why? Because a practice in shorts and no pads doesn’t equate to game-tape.

How could it  ‘affect’ who the Giants pick on Thursday?

Staff within the organization has praised Webb over the course of his one-year career as a Giant, saying he’s a professional through and through, but also maintains a unique work ethic seen in only the best of the best.

He expects quality out of every player, and teammates have described him as having “the ‘IT’ factor.” Is that enough to pass on a quarterback at No. 2? Probably not — but it certainly plays a part in the circumstance that they do.

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Having a live look at Webb is the positive aspect of the additional OTA awarded to a new head coach. It will give Shurmur a chance to see him in motion, despite the lack of pressure and game-like relevance.

If the Giants proceed to snag Penn State running back Saquon Barkley in the draft, we can assume that the new regime have placed their bet on Webb. But how can they keep his cap-hit down while having to pay Odell Beckham Jr., Landon Collins, and Barkley?

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It all comes down to Eli Manning. The Giants’ franchise quarterback will likely be extended to 2019 if a quarterback is not taken on Thursday, which will give Webb a two-year cushion to sit and prepare himself from his inaugural season in 2020. That would be the final year on his rookie deal. The Giants can bait him into signing a long-term deal instead of betting on himself in one season.

Additionally, Manning will be required to take a pay-cut. There is not a single team that will pay him $20 million per-season, and the Giants won’t either. It’s either pay-cut or retire for Eli.

The Strong Arm:

Offering Webb $40 million over four years with $25 million guaranteed puts him at $10 million per-season with incentives. But how can they pull that off? GM Dave Gettleman will have to strong arm his agent, convincing him that they will to draft a quarterback in 2020 despite wanting to commit to Webb. But they won’t invest in him unless they take the deal. Webb and his agent will have to decide on letting the Giants draft a QB and potentially losing the starting job, or signing the long-term deal and guaranteeing Webb as Manning’s heir.

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This locks in a starting QB for only $10 million per-season, which in the end is an absolute steal when compared to other top-tier signal callers.

The question here is: How can we guarantee Webb won’t flop?

Investing $10 million per-year on a QB is chump change, and it wouldn’t set the Giants too far back if it doesn’t pan out. Considering Webb would have Beckham Jr., Evan Engram, Saquon Barkley, and  a solid offensive line, his chances of success are more probable than failure.

 

 

 

 

New York Giants: 4 Different Mock Drafts For Each Top Player

If you were to play a couple hands of poker with Dave Gettleman, than chances are he is walking away with your money. We have heard numerous different reports over the last month tying the Giants to Penn State running back Saquan Barkley.

We have also heard that the Giants brass was gushing over Bradley Chubb’s visit to Metlife and were enamored with his dedication, class and professionalism. Don’t forget all of the touch points with the class’ top quarterback prospects and recent reports that Sam Darnold is the “guy” the G-Men covet.

New York Giant fans have been waiting patiently for April 26th to finally begin to see the vision Gettleman has for the Giants. We have been sifting through all of the reports to try and come up with some idea of what DG is thinking but it is to no avail.

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We know as much as we do two months ago and for all intensive purposes, that is exactly the way it should be. Gettleman has played it close to the vest which has led to a ton of speculation and passionate back and forths between Giant faithful. As much as we may differ with our opinions, the one constant is that we all would love to see Big Blue back in contention on a year in year out basis.

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There is not much to do between now and the draft other than speculate and form your own opinion. So, what I did was find a mock draft simulator and I played Dave Gettleman. I conducted multiple mock drafts with different approaches.

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The process:

I ended up completing four different mocks. I began each mock with a different first round pick based on recent speculation. The only rule I gave myself was that I was not going to draft the same player in any round of the mocks. I do not have any trades in the mocks.

The reasoning:

I simply wanted to give Giant fans a look into what each strategy may look like in order to help guide their opinion.

The Outcome:

Round/Pick Barkley Mock QB Mock Chubb Mock Nelson Mock
1 (2) Saquan Barkley (RB) Josh Rosen (QB) Bradley Chubb (DE) Quenton Nelson (G)
2 (34) Billy Price (C) Sony Michel (RB) Leighton Vander Esch (LB) James Daniels (G)
3 (66) Carlton Davis (CB) Tyrell Crosby (OT) Ronald Jones (RB) Nick Chubb (RB)
3 (69) Justin Reid (S) Lorenzo Carter (LB) Frank Ragnow (G) Luke Falk (QB)
4 (108) Josey Jewell (LB) Duke Dawson (CB) Daesean Hamilton (WR) Michael Gallup (WR)
5 (139) Marcell Ateman (WR) Shaquem Griffin (LB) J.C. Jackson (CB) Michael Dickson (P)

The Interpretation:

After reviewing all of the mocks I would honestly be happy with any of the outcomes. My mindset coming into the draft is that we are getting a great group of young, talented players regardless of which strategy Gettleman and the Giants go with.

If I had to choose which mock I would be most satisfied with I would lean towards is Mock 1 with Saquan Barkley leading the way. It adds a dynamic playmaker with Barkley, solidifies our secondary with a Reid and Davis, and adds another quality offensive lineman. We would also add a wide receiver with good potential and a linebacker that reminds me of Sean Lee. Not a bad haul.

What Will Happen:

Who knows. It could be a combination of the players above. Maybe there are a couple names drafted we did not foreshadow. We may possibly trade the #2 pick for a haul and look to rebuild. Whatever the case may be, we will be getting better and I for one am excited to see who the new Giants will be.

My Perfect Mock (For What It’s Worth)

Pick Player
1 (2) Saquan Barkley (RB)
2 (34) Billy Price (C)
3 (66) Tyrell Crosby (OT)
3 (69) Lorenzo Carter (LB)
4 (108) Duke Dawson (CB)
5 (139) Marcell Ateman (WR)

Ill leave you with this.