New York Mets: Baseball (Supposedly) Returns This Month

Even though a nor’easter is sweeping through the tri-state area, the New York Mets hope to play baseball this month. Luckily for the Mets, they will be in the warm, COVID-19 filled, sunshine state of Florida. With plenty of dirty laundry surrounding the Mets at the moment, here are some things to look forward to this month.

Pitchers and catchers officially report to Port St. Lucie on February 17, and position players join them on February 22. Five days later, the Mets open up their 31 game spring training schedule against the Miami Marlins.

Thor’s Return

Even though he is unlikely to pitch in a Spring Training game, Noah Syndergaard‘s, likely shirtless, presence in camp will be a welcomed sight. Syndergaard is on pace to be ahead of schedule to return from Tommy John surgery, and we will see how much progress he has made.

Carlos Carrasco and Francisco Lindor are amongst the newcomers joining the 2021 roster. The big trade with the Cleveland Indians brought them the starting pitcher and shortstop they were looking for. The big question remains whether their former Indian teammate, Trevor Bauer, because the most expensive newcomer for the Mets.

James McCann will get his first opportunity to work with and learn the Mets pitching staff. After two years of Wilson Ramos, the pitchers can breathe a sigh of relief with McCann behind the plate. McCann is known for his ability to call a game, understanding his pitchers’ tendencies. He also improved as a pitch framer to go along with his solid defense. The most interesting dynamic will be with Jacob deGrom as he tries to retake his Cy Young crown.

Off The Field Distractions

Between Jared Porter’s scandal and Steve Cohen’s deleted Twitter account, the Mets have been in the headlines for plenty of reasons. Let us not forget about Robinson Cano’s suspension, which goes forgotten after many January events. Those questions may not linger past the first week of camp, but the New York media will be ruthless. The off field issues are a non-factor or perpetrated by media figures with an agenda against the franchise.

Mets fans have a legitimate reason to be excited about the season for the first time in years. They have a new owner, a combination of retained and new talent, and they are the favorites to win a very competitive NL East. Along with all of this, the Mets could have more additions to rev up excitement, and maybe controversy, for the 2021 Steve Cohen owned Mets.

Three Positions the New York Jets Could Target In 1st Round

The New York Jets have the 11th pick in the draft. It’s a solid spot to grab a blue-chip prospect. There are three spots the Jets desperately need to improve in the draft. With the opportunity to grab a cornerstone piece at 11, the Jets will target one of these three spots.

Left Tackle

The premier offensive line prospects are a great group. Tristan Wirfs is a spectacular athlete. He’s a great offensive lineman and very agile. Mekhi Becton is a FREAK athlete and very agile as well. Andrew Thomas has the highest ceiling and could be the best of the group. Jedrick Wills is an elite pass protector with incredible potential but would have to transition to left tackle. As long as one of the top 4 guys are there, Joe Douglas seems inclined to add an offensive lineman. There have been rumblings about another position, but, with two weeks to go, I’d say this pick will be a big man. If the Jets trade back, look to Josh Jones of Houston and Austin Jackson of USC to be targeted.

Wide Receiver

The receiver class is more loaded than any in recent memory. There are three key guys who could be targeted at 11 if the Jets target receiver. Henry Ruggs is the dynamic speed demon who lit up the combine. Jerry Jeudy is your prototypical receiver 1 and a crisp route runner. CeeDee Lamb is a little bit of both. Lamb has been the most connected to the Jets and wouldn’t be a surprise per Bleacher Report’s Matt Miller. Lamb and Jeudy are both can’t miss talents. Lamb can be the Hopkins to Darnold’s Watson and potentially be his key playmaker. With that said, I’d love a receiver here, but with the depth in this class at the position, Darnold could use someone at 11 who can protect Sam and give him time to throw. If the Jets trade back, the Jets could grab Justin Jefferson or Jalen Reagor, two-speed demons who could fit well in the Jets offense.

Edge Rusher

This came down to two spots for me. Edge rusher or corner. Pierre Desir and Bless Austin have a lot of potential as a corner duo for next season. I am a big Desir guy, I think he’s incredibly underrated. If they can add another corner in the later rounds then they’d be in a decent spot for the time being at corner. Edge rusher is rough. Jordan Jenkins and Tarell Basham are the projected duo heading into next season. Jenkins and Basham are not the long term duo. Jenkins is on a prove-it deal and Basham isn’t proven. The Jets could use their next star edge rusher. Chase Young will be gone at 11, but K’Lavon Chaisson is a phenomenal talent. He’s dynamic and quick, but with so many other needs, he may not be worth the pick this high or at all with the other needs. If the Jets trade down, AJ Epsensa, Zack Baun and Yetur Gross Matos would all be great targets at the edge spot.

New York Giants: The Ideal Three-Round Mock Draft (With Trades)

The 2020 NFL Draft might be get delayed, but that will only give us all a bit more time to break down prospects and create mock drafts. The New York Giants will need all the time they can get to prepare for this crucial draft. They hold the fourth overall pick this year and will need to hit a home run in order to turn this team around. But what would that home run, ideal draft look like for New York?

Round One, Pick Four: Chase Young, Edge Rusher, Ohio State

In the ideal mock draft for the Giants, they will land the best player in the entire 2020 NFL Draft class. Chase Young out of Ohio State University is exactly that. The 2020 Heisman Trophy finalist recorded 16.5 sacks in 12 games this past season. In order for this to happen, quarterbacks will have to be selected with each of the first three picks in the draft.

The Bengals will select Joe Burrow, pretty much everyone believes that to be true at this point. But what will the Redskins do? Easily, they could take the best player in the draft, Chase Young, and move forward with Dwayne Haskins as their quarterback. However, there is growing speculation that Washington will either trade the second overall pick to a quarterback-needy team (like the Dolphins) or spend it on a quarterback of their own. That quarterback would be Tua Tagovailoa.

After Joe and Tua will have to go Justin Herbert. The Lions hold the third overall pick and it seems likely that they will trade down. The Chargers, Colts, Dolphins, Buccaneers, and Panthers are all teams that might be willing to move up for the opportunity to select the Oregon gunslinger. If these three quarterbacks get drafted all in a row, Giants fans will be filled with joy as Gettleman sprints to get the card in and proudly draft Chase Young.

Round Two, Pick Thirty-Six: Austin Jackson, Offensive Tackle, USC

It is no question that the New York Giants have holes all over their roster. The defense is especially talentless. However, New York desperately needs to upgrade their offensive line as well. Nate Solder has seen his play decline in recent years and the Giants’ 2019 right tackle, Mike Remmers, is a free agent and is unlikely to receive an extension.

It is time for the Giants to invest draft capital into their offensive line. In 2018, they secured starting left guard Will Hernandez in the second round. Now, in this ideal mock draft, the Giants will secure their starting right tackle in the second round of the 2020 NFL Draft.

Austin Jackson out of USC might not be there by the time the Giants are on the clock in the second round. However, the same was said about Will Hernandez in 2018. In the Giants’ ideal 2020 mock draft, Austin Jackson slides just a few more spots and falls right into New York’s lap.

Round Three, Pick 84 (Via Trade): Troy Dye, Linebacker, Oregon

It would be easy to mock select wide receiver Chase Claypool to the Giants here. Whether it would require them to trade up or not remains to be seen. However, recent reports indicate that the Giants will be prioritizing wide receivers in free agency. They plan on focusing their draft picks on the defense. After stealing Chase Young with the fourth overall pick and securing an offensive tackle in round two, ideally, New York will shift its attention back to the defense in round three.

Also, in an ideal world, the Giants would still own the sixty-eight overall pick. However, after trading for Leonard Williams in 2019, they do not own that pick anymore. So, instead, the Giants will use trade up from their compensatory ninety-ninth draft selection in order to select an athletic coverage linebacker.

Many fans will be hoping and praying that the Giants’ first pick is Isaiah Simmons. I believe it should be, as long as Chase Young is not available. But this year’s draft class is rich in linebackers, and Troy Dye would be a solid option for the Giants in the third round.

Troy Dye is an Oregon linebacker with excellent athleticism and coverage-skills. He is the right player to pair with David Mayo, the Giants’ run-stopping linebacker that just received a contract extension. But New York would likely have to trade up to secure this linebacker.

The New York Giants have limitless options and possibilities heading into the 2020 NFL Draft. The class has depth in positions that the Giants need. If all goes well, New York should be able to secure a multitude of core players to build this team around in the future.

New York Giants: 2 tackle prospects to consider in the second round of the 2020 NFL Draft

New York Giants, Austin Jackson

The New York Giants hold the 4th overall pick in the 2020 NFL draft, and with Clemson standout linebacker, Isaiah Simmons, on the board, there’s a high probability GM Dave Gettleman looks no further.

However, there is the chance that the Giants trade back a few slots to acquire more draft capital from a QB-needy time like the Chargers or Dolphins. In this scenario, let’s assume that Gettleman picks Simmons, and he plans to utilize his second-round pick on an offensive tackle.

Here are two prospects the New York Giants should look into:

1.) Austin Jackson – OT, USC

At 6-6, 305 pounds, Jackson is a massive human being with a 1-2 round projection. If he falls to pick 36 for Big Blue, he should be their selection without hesitation. The upcoming draft is packed full of tackle options, which makes Jackson sliding to the second round very possible.

Scouts have stated that Jackson is a fantastic athlete with quick feet and agility. His ability to move and bend at the knee level enables good leverage and positioning. His athleticism has compensated for his fundamental mistakes at times, but that’s something that can be ironed out at the next level. Having a good grasp of the fundamentals and the athleticism to accompany it makes him an intriguing player and an excellent option for the Giants who need to plug the left tackle position. Nate Solder had a poor 2019 campaign and could be moved over the right tackle if the Giants are willing to give Jackson a chance on the left side.

2.) Trey Adams – OT, Washington

If you thought Austin Jackson was big, Trey Adams takes it to another level at 6-7, 334 pounds. As a 1-3 round projection, Adams is a bit rawer than Jackson with his fundamentals, but he has incredible mobility for his size.

Adams did a great job of protecting Jacob Eason last season, opening up holes of attack in the running game, and ensuring Eason wasn’t put under too much pressure. Inconsistencies have hurt Adams at times, but if he can bunker down and develop further, there’s no reason he can’t be a quality starter for the Giants moving forward.

In the scenario that both Jackson and Adams are on the board, the former would be the better pick, but don’t rule out Adams from climbing the draft boards after his interviews and combine visit. Durability remains a concern for Adams, who missed a big chunk of 2018 with a back injury.

The Real Question for the New York Giants at 4

New York Giants, DeAndre Baker

The New York Giants have a very real dilemma if they do not trade back in the 2020 NFL Draft this April.  Of course, any Giant fan will hold on to the dream of Chase Young falling to New York, but the roads to get there are nearly impassable.  

It would take a team willing to outbid the Miami Dolphins, who hold five picks in the first two rounds this year, for Washington’s pick.  Which would also mean the Redskins would be willing to move outside the Top 5.

Possible? Sure. So is me winning a lottery jackpot upwards of one billion dollars?

What options do the Giants realistically have at 4?

Fans of the New York Giants should stick to three options assuming they stay at number 4.  Those options are offensive tackle, a versatile defensive unicorn, and another young cornerback.

Offensive Tackle

Fortunately for the Giants, the offensive tackle class has some very good talent.  There are four options right now that the Giants could consider at the 4th overall. Alabama’s Jedrick Wills, Georgia’s Andrew Thomas, Iowa’s Tristan Wirfs, and Mekhi Becton out of Louisville.  

Jedrick Wills seems to be separating himself a bit from the rest, but Mekhi Becton has been gaining quite a bit of steam heading into the pre-draft process.  I wrote in my most recent mock draft that I believe Andrew Thomas would be the best fit for the Giants run game, but Becton Wills and Wirfs all have their arguments as well.  Admittedly, I’m beginning to lean more towards Wills, while not being able to deny the lateral movement of Becton. Regardless, if Dave Gettleman wants to add a hog molly with the 4th pick, there are plenty of options.

The Unicorn

All I really need to say here is the name “Isaiah Simmons” and end this paragraph.  Everyone knows his name and what he can do. He’s versatile, he’s talented and he has very few, if any, weaknesses to his game.  Simmons can play a variety of positions, which is what makes him attractive for the Giants here. He wouldn’t fix all of the defenses issues, but wherever he plays best would be an upgrade for New York.

His best fit for the Giants would likely be linebacker.  Either as an interior LB or as the WILL in a 4-3 front. Regardless, he can cover running backs, tight ends and even wide receivers, as well as be an impact blitzer.  If you’ve been a fan of the Giants for awhile, you likely desire a talented sideline-to-sideline linebacker that can defend the pass against running backs and tightends as much as I have.  Simmons is that answer.


Albeit the least likely of the three options, one can not rule out the Giants potential attraction to Ohio State’s Jeffrey Okudah.  Okudah’s man coverage skills and athletic ability may result in him evolving into one of, if not the best cornerback in the NFL during his time.  He is physical and can stay on a receivers hip through any route. Okudah’s ball skills are tremendous. He may need to work on his zone presence a little, but the value he adds in the pass game outweighs that.

The Dilemma

To me, the real debate for the Giants if they choose to stay at four is simple.  Linebacker or offensive tackle. Of course, Simmons can play more than just linebacker, but he is best suited for the middle of the defense.  He’s not a true EDGE rusher and putting him at safety takes him away from being a consistent impact on every rep. If the Giants draft Simmons, it is to play him at linebacker.  

As much as I covet a game-changing linebacker for this team, is a linebacker more valuable and more of a dire need for the New York Giants?  It certainly is something they need to address, but let’s not ignore the issues at offensive line.

The problems along the offensive line have been rampant for the Giants for years.  Nate Solder was given a big contract but has not lived up to it. The right tackle has been a carousel of players with no clear answer.  Misfortune and durability have crippled the starting center role. Trying to patch the line up can no longer be an answer.  

OL Nick Gates showed promise last season.  He stepped in when Mike Remmers was injured and looked good.  Whether or not he can be a consistent starter quality talent for New York is still a question.  Free-agent Jack Conklin has been a name linked to the Giants for some time now, but his signing with Big Blue is no certainty either.  Even with the addition of Conklin, do either him or Gates have what it takes to play left tackle? Can Nate Solder drastically improve?  

Finding a talented offensive line is not just a problem that plagues the Giants.  Every team in the NFL values talent on their line every off-season. There are plenty of teams with good lines, but having depth is another thing.  Jack Conklin could command big money in free agency, which the Giants have, but are they willing and able to outbid other suitors? Time will tell. 

The 2020 offensive tackle class this year is pretty talented.  As noted earlier, there are four options for the Giants with the 4th pick.  Usually, if a position of need is deep, I am all for waiting to select a player.  However, is this really something worth risking to wait until taking with the 2nd pick?  Would players like Josh Jones, Lucas Niang and Austin Jackson have the same impact and longevity? They might, but why let another team dictate who you can pick if you have the fortune of being able to choose whoever you want?

Isaiah Simmons is a fantastic athlete and I will not be disappointed to hear his name called to the Giants in April.  I will be the first in line to buy his jersey.  However, when it comes down to it, offensive tackle is a much more important need than a linebacker. The Giants have taken risks in the last two drafts.  A running back with the 2nd overall pick, and then a controversial QB selection in 2019. It is imperative for the success of the team to give both of those players help.  Even if that means sacrificing a unicorn in the process.