Giants will have to pay ‘QB tax’ to secure top passer in 1st round

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Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports

The New York Giants have extensively scouted most of the top quarterbacks in the 2024 NFL draft class. Although Caleb Williams and Jayden Daniels are expected to be selected with the first two picks, the Giants have prepared for every possibility and should have finalized their draft board by now.

However, holding the 6th overall pick poses challenges for the Giants, as they are out of range for the top quarterbacks in the draft class and will likely need to move up to secure a young prospect and reset the rookie quarterback window.

With concerns surrounding Daniel Jones’s contract and his injury history, it seems prudent for the Giants to consider resetting the quarterback position if the opportunity arises, and general manager Joe Schoen is expected to be aggressive in pursuing his preferred candidate.

NFL: Los Angeles Rams at New York Giants
Dec 31, 2023; East Rutherford, New Jersey, USA; New York Giants injured quarterback Daniel Jones (8) watches warmups before a game against the Los Angeles Rams at MetLife Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports

Nonetheless, acquiring a top quarterback might incur a “QB tax,” as Jordan Raanan of ESPN recently noted. Schoen himself has mentioned the possibility of paying more to move up if a team knows they can leverage their position.

“I would say that’s probably true if people know what you’re coming up for,” Giants general manager Joe Schoen said.

The Giants Should be Aggressive If the Opportunity Arises

If the New England Patriots are open to trading the 3rd overall pick, the Giants could secure a quarterback like Drake Maye or Daniels, both of whom would be excellent fits under head coach Brian Daboll.

Indeed, Daboll was brought in to develop a quarterback, and Daniel Jones, despite his talents, has struggled with persistent issues that surfaced again in 2024 before his season was cut short by a neck injury and a torn ACL.

The Giants Hold Good Cards

Teams looking to trade down might find the Giants an appealing partner, especially if they can acquire a blue-chip wide receiver prospect such as Marvin Harrison Jr., Malik Nabers, or Rome Odunze.

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Malik Nabers 8 as the LSU Tigers take on Texas A&M in Tiger Stadium in Baton Rouge, Louisiana, November 25, 2023. Credit: SCOTT CLAUSE/USA TODAY Network / USA TODAY NETWORK

The Minnesota Vikings, who are also rumored to be in the market for a quarterback, lack the assets to offer a top receiver, but they do possess an extra first-round pick. Schoen has indicated that he has received numerous unexpected calls about trading back in the draft.

A team like Minnesota might attempt to move up to the 6th overall pick as a stepping stone to acquiring the 3rd or 4th overall pick.

North Carolina Tar Heels quarterback Drake Maye (10) (New York Giants prospect)
Nov 11, 2023; Chapel Hill, North Carolina, USA; DUPLICATE***North Carolina Tar Heels quarterback Drake Maye (10)***North Carolina Tar Heels defensive lineman Desmond Evans (10) looks to pass in the second quarter at Kenan Memorial Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Bob Donnan-USA TODAY Sports

Ultimately, Drake Maye’s and J.J. McCarthy’s ranking on draft boards—considering Maye’s tangible qualities and McCarthy’s recent National Championship win and proficiency in a pro-style offense—will influence how aggressively the Giants and other teams pursue quarterbacks in the first five picks.

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