The New York Giants are in need of assistance at several positions across the team, and allocating premium first round quality towards every void is impossible.
Therefore, let’s rank the priority positions with just two weeks left until the 2019 NFL draft:
Some might say that a pass-rusher is the most needed player at the moment, but the fact of the matter is that the quarterback position holds so much value that it simply cannot be avoided. The Giants must find a successor for Eli Manning or they will be betting the farm on a 2020 prospect. Drafting at No. 6 gives them the upper-hand when it comes to finding their guy, as they likely will have more success next season in terms of wins.
They must take advantage of their high draft spot this year and select a passer, whether it be Dwayne Haskins, Kyler Murray, or even Drew Lock. Manning is on his final leg as a starting quarterback, and if he fails to produce behind an improved offensive line, management will be on the hot seat.
2.) Defensive line – Pass rusher
Second up on the docket is a pass rusher, or defensive tackle if Quinnen Williams falls into their laps at No. 6. The departure of Olivier Vernon leaves a massive hole on the defensive front with a lack of pass-rushing talent. Putting the quarterbacking on his heals will be difficult without a strong and proven player to fill the shoes of Vernon.
The Giants currently have Markus Golden and Lorenzo Carter as their rush-specialists, but I could see general manager Dave Gettleman finding himself in a situation where an option like Kentucky’s Josh Allen is sitting there for the taking. Securing a premium edge rusher with outside linebacker diversity on his rookie deal would allow the Giants to continue building a balanced team and piecing together the defense with low-cost draft selections.
While Alec Ogletree had a solid season in 2018, B.J. Goodson has proved that he’s more capable of contracting injuries than making appearances. Missing 11 games in two seasons has plagued Goodson’s once optimistic level of potential. He’s an above average tackler with good run-stopping ability, but not being on the field simply doesn’t help the team succeed.
Finding a more healthy option in the draft should be a priority, while Goodson should take a backseat as a reserve/scheme player.
4.) Right tackle
Similar to what the Giants did in the 2018 NFL draft, I expect them to allocate their second-round pick towards the offensive line, specifically at right tackle. Replacing Chad Wheeler is a must this offseason, since he graded out as the #78 tackle in the league last season, according to PFF.
Kansas State tackle Dalton Risner makes the most sense for the Giants in the second round, but he has some flaws that might restrict his potential. I don’t anticipate the Giants spending first-round capital on the position, but Gettleman seems to be determined to make the line one of the better units on the team and in the league – nothing can be ruled out here if Andre Dillard or Jawaan Taylor are available at No. 17.
The Giants need to draft at least two corners in the first four rounds of the draft. Players like Notre Dame’s Julian Love and Temple’s Rock Ya-Sin present great value after the first two rounds if available.
The drafting of Sam Beal in the Supplemental Draft offers some value opposite Janoris Jenkins, but missing the entire 2018 campaign with a shoulder injury doesn’t help his case. The Giants lack a true No. 2 corner and will be looking to find developmental value while they piece together their defense on all levels.
Signing Antoine Bethea was a good move in the interim as he provides tons of experience in the NFL and with defensive coordinator James Bettcher. Bethea made the transition from strong safety to free as age caught up with him. He will be able to teach the younger player or potential draft picks.
One of the more exciting developmental prospects is Deleware’s Nasir Adderley. Sitting behind Bethea for a season would be beneficial and would present the Giants will a starter at the position for the foreseeable future.