The New York Giants are in the market for new playmakers. After the Giants’ offense averaged only 17.5 points per game in 2020, general manager Dave Gettleman and co-owner John Mara promised to add playmakers to New York’s offense this offseason. This has led man to assume that the Giants will be drafting a wide receiver with the eleventh overall pick in the 2021 NFL Draft.
This year’s draft class is loaded with wide receiver talent. At the top are three blue-chip prospects that could all potentially be drafted in the top ten. Devonta Smith, Jaylen Waddle, and Ja’Marr Chase are all elite wide receiver prospects. If one of these players falls to the Giants at eleven, New York should not even hesitate to draft them.
But which wide receiver prospect should be the Giants’ number one target? According to Pro Football Focus, Jaylen Waddle and the Giants are a perfect prospect-team pairing. PFF’s Anthony Treash named the Giants Jaylen Waddle’s best landing spot.
Why Jaylen Waddle and the Giants are a perfect match
The Giants are in need of a dynamic receiving threat to help Daniel Jones have his year-three breakout season. Jaylen Waddle could be that receiver for Big Blue. One of Waddle’s main selling points to the Giants is his elite, game-changing speed. The Giants do not have a guy on their roster that possesses the speed that Waddle does.
PFF Anthony compared Waddle’s speed to that of Henry Ruggs III, a prospect who teams fell in love with after he recorded a 4.27s 40-yard-dash time at last year’s NFL Scouting Combine.
The things that make Waddle such a good prospect match the things that Daniel Jones does well as a quarterback. Waddle’s speed makes him a premiere vertical threat. The Giants’ offense lacked vertical threats in 2020, but they did have a quarterback that threw the ball deep with great efficiency. Daniel Jones earned the third-best passing grade on passes thrown over 20 yards downfield, per PFF.
Jaylen Waddle did not play a full season in 2020 as he suffered a season-ending injury after only 4 games. But in those games he played, Jaylen was incredible and was on pace to have a phenomenal season. Waddle was that deep threat that Jones needs, totaling 329 deep receiving yards over those four contests. He finished the season with 591 yards and 4 touchdowns and established himself as arguably the top receiver in this year’s draft class.
Is we inch closer to the NFL Draft in April, the boards will continue to shift and prospects will see their stocks rise and fall. Waddle is a player unlikely to make it out of the top ten, but if he is on the board for the Giants with the eleventh overall pick, he would be a home-run selection.