With the Senior Bowl underway, the New York Giants are hoping that every quarterback shines and creates more hype surrounding their draft stock.
The notable risers include Liberty QB in Malik Willis, Cincinnati passer Desmond Ridder, and Pittsburgh signal-caller Kenny Pickett. The Senior Bowl also includes Sam Howell from UNC and Carson Strong from Nevada. I would be remiss not to mention Matt Corral out of Ole Miss, who suffered an injury during his Bowl game, keeping him out of the Senior Bowl.
There is increasing buzz surrounding most of these veteran quarterbacks at the collegiate level, but red flags and weaknesses will have a spotlight as they make their way to the NFL. However, their strengths and capabilities will be put on full display during Senior Bowl practices and exhibition games.
In a perfect world, most of these quarterbacks see their stock rise because of the constructed practices, but The Combine will also offer them an opportunity to put elevated numbers on paper. The biggest riser up to this point has been Willis from Liberty.
The small school quarterback has been electrifying during Senior Bowl play but has struggled at times with accuracy and mechanics. Nonetheless, he’s the most physically imposing quarterback of the bunch, showcasing phenomenal arm strength and athleticism, giving him the ability to escape the pocket with ease and create opportunities on the run.
Willis has always been a home run hitting quarterback, but Jordan Reid of ESPN indicates he’s an even bigger project than Josh Allen coming out of Wyoming, so whatever team drafts him must have a legitimate situation in place to develop him without forcing a starting job on the young prospect.
The Giants, who have the 5th and 7th overall picks in the 2022 NFL draft, are desperately hoping a quarterback-needy team falls in love with one of these prospects.
Under the control of Dave Gettleman and Joe Judge, the Giants executed a trade back with the Chicago Bears, landing the 20th pick in 2022 and the 164th pick last year in the 3rd round. Ideally, they would have the luxury of doing something similar with a team like the Steelers, Saints, Washington, and maybe even Tampa Bay. There are always teams that fall in love with QB prospects and are looking to move up.
‘If’ a team “falls in full bloom love” with a quarterback, the Giants could theoretically move back several spots, collect more draft capital for 2022 or even the 2023 Draft, giving them ammo in case they want a different quarterback. Draft capital is the most valuable asset during a rebuild, and the Giants are in a perfect position to leverage one of their top picks.