New York Giants Under Joe Judge Doing Well In Draft Scouting So Far

Cay North
New York Giants, Joe Judge
Jan 9, 2020; East Rutherford, New Jersey, USA; Introductory press conference of New York Giants new head coach Joe Judge at MetLife Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Danielle Parhizkaran-USA TODAY Sports

The New York Giants are in the hands of head coach Joe Judge going forward, and one of the most significant parts of the year for Judge won’t come during the upcoming season, but during this offseason – that’s the NFL Draft, where the Giants hold the fourth overall pick and will be faced with a tough decision soon enough on who to take.

The Combine is one of the best chances that scouts and executives have to check out the players that are coming out of college each year in the Draft, and the Giants notably sent their entire staff to the Combine in 2020 to evaluate the players there. But how did the team do with the event in their first season under a rookie head coach?

“Joe’s been great – all the guys have been great. Willing to help, wanting to be part of the process, we want them as part of the process. Joe and the staff have done a great job lining us up with what they look for in players, what they look for on defense, what they look for on offense, the type of people they like…” Director of College Scouting Chris Pettit told Giants.com. “They’ve been really good and telling us, defining this is what their vision is.”

As for what the Giants are looking for out of this Draft, Judge himself spoke on their strategy – in general terms, but in a way that shows the Giants have a plan in this rather than just picking the best available player at each spot.

“We’re looking for guys who fit our program, and that’s schematically, that’s within the values and principles, guys who have the right character, that have the right traits to fit in our locker room with our players. The second they walk into that room, we’re evaluating them all the way on through, both what they’ll bring on the field and off the field,” Judge said.

Paying more attention to character may aid the Giants in avoiding more players like Ereck Flowers and Eli Apple – both players were drafted high up by the previous regime and ended up exiting the Giants after under-performing, and both players were criticized not just for their play but for their off the field attitudes before their exits.

“It’s really our first exposure with these players as coaches, so it’s a good first impression we’re looking for. In this process, there’s a lot of guys. Some people, it’s adding them higher on your board. Some, it’s eliminating people from the process,” Judge added, stating that it’s important to sit down and meet players face to face – something that the Combine facilitates.

Currently the Giants are said to be in the market for an offensive tackle or a defensive line player, and it looks like the team will either use the fourth overall pick on the former or will trade down for further picks with a team looking to draft a quarterback.

Whatever the Giants do, their evaluations were likely impacted by the Combine – which by all accounts went well in Joe Judge’s first time at the helm at one.