The New York Giants have a long way to go before they are considered a winning football team. After hitting rock-bottom in two consecutive seasons, the Giants made significant changes in the front office and overhauled their coaching staff.
Under the leadership of Joe Schoen and Brian Daboll, the expectation is that the Giants will correct course and revitalize their offense. Whether it be through the draft or free agency, the roster needs an influx of talent. However, new management can’t rely on the first round to be the team’s savior, as Dave Gettleman did during his tenure. My fellow fans, we’ve been conditioned to accept a fate of disgraceful drafting year after year — we don’t expect much after the first round, but that needs to change.
Every year, Giants fans hyper-focus on their first-round selections, hoping they can revolutionize the franchise and provide elite play-making ability.
Without adequate coaching, that is virtually impossible. With a new staff that is well respected, the likelihood of putting together a competent and disciplined team is more likely.
The New York Giants are modernizing, but the value remains the same:
Nonetheless, a successful rebuild starts in the middle rounds, not with the 5th and 7th overall picks, where the probability of hitting on a player is far greater. During Gettleman’s four-year stint with Big Blue, his success rate in the mid-rounds was abysmal, putting together a graveyard of picks.
In 2018, he selected Lorenzo Carter, BJ Hill, Kyle Lauletta, and R.J. McIntosh. Only one of those players currently plays for the Giants and is headed toward free agency with a massive question hanging over his head.
In 2019, he extracted value from Julian Love and Darius Slayton, but 3rd round pick Oshane Ximines was benched at the end of the 2021 season. Gettleman struck out on nearly every mid-round player during his first two drafts, which set the franchise back significantly in their rebuild.
That is not even to mention how poorly he drafted in the early rounds as well, with Saquon Barkley providing little to no help after his rookie season due to injury. Daniel Jones is still a big question, and Dexter Lawrence regressed significantly last season. If you remember DeAndre Baker, he ended up with the Kansas City Chiefs after getting into serious legal issues.
During his introductory press conference, new general manager Joe Schoen indicated that you often miss on the person, not the player. As an example, we can look directly at Baker, a player the Giants traded up for, passing on Byron Murphy, Rock Yeah-Sin, and Deebo Samuel.
Looking at the Buffalo Bills’ draft history, they hit on various mid-round selections once Schoen joined the team back in 2017. Names like Matt Milano, Tanner Vallejo, Dion Dawkins, Wyatt Teller, Dawson Knox, Jaquan Johnson, Gabriel Davis, Zack Moss, Tommy Doyle, Spencer Brown, and more stand out as impact players.
The secret ingredient to successfully building a team isn’t exactly a secret — it is to hit on players in the middle rounds, which make up a significant portion of the team’s depth. If you can extract above-average players in that area, you are well ahead of the pack.
Looking at the Giants’ draft history, they failed miserably to gain playmakers in that area under Ole Dave, recycling a strategy of high first-round picks to help smooth over the roster, but their salary hits were exponential, making it an unsustainable method.