New York Giants Predicted By Vegas To Take Jedrick Wills In Draft

New York Jets, Jedrick Wills

With the NFL Draft impending very soon, many voices have weighed in on which player the New York Giants will take at number four. Assuming they don’t trade the pick to a team looking for a quarterback, at least. Mekhi Becton, Tristan Wirfs, Andrew Thomas, and Jedrick Wills have all been popular names to throw into the mix. That doesn’t mean that there haven’t been dark horse prospects linked to the Giants, however, such as Derrick Brown of Auburn.

One prospect, though, has been placed ahead of the others by one of the parties with the greatest interest in getting the answer right – Las Vegas, and the gambling industry. According to Sports Betting Dime, it’s Jedrick Wills from Alabama that’s the favorite to be selected by the Giants, coming in at -167 odds. The prospect with the next highest odds? Tristan Wirfs, at +300.

Wirfs is the player that Peter King has mocked to the Giants but the betting odds give Wills a fair edge over the Iowa tackle. If there’s one thing that both players have in common, though, it’s that they’re safe picks. Both players are from major college programs and therefore have experience against the best – both players are also known for their athleticism, a trait that the Giants are looking for.

But Wills is from an Alabama program that the Giants already have connections to. Head coach Joe Judge, after all, is from the coaching tree of Nick Saban. The Giants are likely to try to take advantage of some of the lessons learned in Judge’s time there, and it helps to bring in players who can thrive under such a system.

Of course, it’s also to Wills’ advantage that his stats are some of the best in the country. With one sack allowed through his entire college career, Wills looks like a player that can immediately supplant Nate Solder at tackle and pass protect for Daniel Jones, filling a crucial need.

However, one must remember that Dave Gettleman is at the helm of the Giants and their draft strategy. While taking Wills seems like the orthodox choice, Gettleman doesn’t often take the expected route, leaving most fans wondering what he will decide right down until the decision is made.

New York Giants: Arguments For And Against Drafting Isaiah Simmons

The 2020 NFL Draft is days away. The New York Giants hold the fourth overall pick, their third straight season picking inside the top-ten. General Manager Dave Gettleman is heading into his third draft as GM of the Giants and needs to put together a strong class in order to keep his job.

Holding a top-pick again, the Giants are in the position to add a franchise player this year. There are plenty of top-tier prospects that will be available to fill big positions of need. But which position should they fill? Should they take the best player available (likely Isaiah Simmons) or address the offensive tackle position? Simmons has been the fan-favorite selection for most of the pre-draft process. However, it might be time for fans to consider jumping off of the Simmons hype train and look into this year’s offensive tackle class.

Arguments For:

When Will It Be Time To Invest In The Defense?

In the last eight NFL Drafts, seven of the Giants’ first picks have been spent on the offense. The Giants’ defense only accounts for 35.85% of the team’s salary cap, ranking 30th in the NFL (via Spotrac). New York has barely invested in their defense and it shows with the team’s recent on-field performances.

Meanwhile, the Giants’ offense accounts for 49.48% of the team’s salary cap. More specifically, 22.13% of the team’s salary is spent on the offensive line. Dave Gettleman and company have made it a point to upgrade the offensive line and they have invested into it plenty. But offensive tackle is still one of the weakest positions on the team- and one of the most crucial. Maybe they should continue investing.

A Defensive Playmaker or An Offensive Tackle?

Which position of need is more important? An offensive tackle or a defensive playmaker? If the question were “Chase Young or a tackle?”, everyone would be in agreement that Chase Young is the right choice. But that’s not the debate.

The debate is between uber-versatile linebacker Isaiah Simmons and any of the top offensive tackle prospects. Which of the two options should the New York Giants spend their first-round draft pick on? The Giants do not necessarily have a hole at linebacker (after signing Blake Martinez and re-signing David Mayo), but really on the defense as a whole.

Teams can win games with a bad offensive line (see Seattle Seahawks). But it is nearly impossible to have a winning season with the defense the Giants currently have constructed. The Giants’ best players on defense are recently free agents James Bradberry and Blake Martinez- and they were brought in to replace Alec Ogletree and Janoris Jenkins.

They are upgrades, but the defense did not improve drastically this offseason and likely won’t unless they select Isaiah Simmons at fourth overall. He is a linebacker with the ability to man up on tight ends and excel in coverage.

Isaiah Simmons played over 100 snaps at five different positions in the 2019 CFB season. According to Pro Football Focus, Simmons played 100 snaps at strong safety, 116 snaps at outside linebacker, 132 snaps at free safety, 262 snaps at slot cornerback, and 299 snaps at inside linebacker.

If the Giants are looking to instantly upgrade their defense, look no further than Isaiah Simmons. He will fill the coverage role while Blake Martinez and David Mayo stuff the run. The defense would function at a much higher-level as early as this season. But the draft is not always about instant-upgrades. Sometimes teams need to plan for the future and play the long game. Investing in an offensive tackle would be the long-term solution rather than the instant-upgrade.

Arguments Against:

Talent At The Top Of The OT Class Is Loaded.

The top offensive tackles in this draft class are immensely talented. Draft analysts and experts have struggled to rank the top four tackles. Some have Mekhi Becton as high as the first-ranked tackle, others have him as the sixth-ranked tackle. There are many who believe Jedrick Wills is the best in the class while many others believe Wirfs or Thomas is the best in the class.

Regardless of where each expert has them ranked, they are all consensus first-round talents. The Giants would be finding an instant-starter (and a long-term starter) on the offensive line if they took one of those prospects at fourth overall.

Significant Drop-Off In OT Talent After The First Tier.

Those top offensive tackle prospects are great. Wirfs, Wills, Thomas, and Becton all have legitimate All-Pro potential. But after that, this offensive tackle class has a significant drop off in talent.

Second-round prospects, like Isaiah Wilson and Austin Jackson, are- simply-put- projects. They are not pro-ready. They lack technique but do possess ideal, large, strong bodies. NFL coaching might be able to turn them into capable starters but there is no guarantee. Fortunately, they are young and have room to grow, however, the Giants need an answer at offensive tackle sooner than later.

NFL Draft Watch: Top 5 OL Rankings

With the NFL Draft rapidly approaching, over the next few days, I plan on breaking down the best and brightest talents in this year’s class. This offensive line class has a lot of good players. The core four have stolen a lot of the headlines, but how do they rank in my eyes and is there a surprise 5th guy who could join the party?

1. Tristan Wirfs, Iowa

Pro Comparison: Ronnie Stanley

Wirfs is the top guy in this class in my opinion. Wirfs has the most upside and the least downside. Wirfs has a few technical flaws and he needs a little more coaching and refinement. Aside from that Wirfs is a great prospect. Wirfs has incredible athleticism, size, and durability. Wirfs comes from an offensive lineman factory and he’s going to be a stud at the next level. Ronnie Stanley is an All-Pro tackle and projects to be the best-case scenario for Wirfs.

2. Jedrick Wills, Alabama

Pro Comparison: Jason Peters

Jedrick Wills is a great prospect. Good run blocker, excellent pass protector and a good resume. Wills has competed against the best of the best in the SEC, and now Wills is heading to the next level. Wills showed one technical issue, lack of effort. Wills is a superb talent, but there were a few plays where you can see he gives up after a spin move that he doesn’t adjust to. That can change at the next level. Wills biggest downfall for me is the move he’ll have to make. Many see Wills as a left tackle, but he’s typically played on the right side. If Wills has a smooth transformation, he can be a damn good player. Wills reminds me of Jason Peters. Peters is a quiet and steady lineman who does his job at a high level and gets it done consistently.

3. Andrew Thomas, Georgia

Pro Comparison: Laremy Tunsil

I like Andrew Thomas a lot. He is the safest offensive lineman. He’s proven against SEC completion that his transition should be smooth. He’s a good run blocker and good pass blocker. He’s a special player, but he doesn’t have a singular standout trait. Thomas is just a simple and good player. That’s all you can ask for an offensive lineman, Thomas is a steady player and I think his transition will be similar to Tunsil’s. Tunsil had success fairly quickly and provided stability on the left side for the Dolphins, Thomas can do that wherever he gets picked.

4. Mekhi Becton, Louisville

Pro Comparison: Jonathan Ogden

Becton is a monster. At 364 lbs, the man ran a 5.10 second 40 yd dash. Becton is superhuman and an absolute bully on the offensive line. Becton has the most upside of these prospects. If his athleticism translates to the NFL, he’ll be unstoppable. There was just a lot of inconsistency to me in his tape. Some plays he bullied edge rushers, other plays, simplistic stunts threw him off. Becton also is a scary prospect on the physical side. At 360 plus pounds, moving around quickly could cause wear and tear over time. Durability could be a question. If Becton proves to be durable and gains some more knowledge on preventing those stunts and spin moves from killing him, Becton could be the best of these top 4 guys. Jonathan Ogden brutalized defensive linemen, just like Becton has the potential to do.

5. Ezra Cleveland, Boise State

Pro Comparison: Nate Solder

Ezra Cleveland has shot up draft boards. Rumors are swirling he could end up as a first-rounder. Cleveland, Josh Jones, Cushenberry, Ruiz, and Austin Jackson are the tier 2 of offensive linemen. Cleveland has the most upside of all of them if he can gain some more mass. At 310 that sounds unreasonable to ask him to gain more weight, but Cleveland just needs to fill out physically. Cleveland has some flaws, but if coached properly, he can be a franchise cornerstone at the tackle spot. 

New York Giants: 11 Evaluators Name Mekhi Becton Top Tackle In 2020 Class

New York Jets, Mekhi Becton

If the New York Giants decide to spend the fourth overall pick in the 2020 NFL Draft on a tackle, they have no shortage of options. In fact, one could argue that they have too many options, and that there’s no clear player to take at this spot. There’s multiple tackles who are highly rated by analysts and the press, and it looks like this draft presents a large danger of taking the wrong player while another player at the position has a more successful career with another team.

As we come closer to the scheduled draft, however, the narrative is shaping up and its becoming clearer which players experts prefer and which ones they think will fall in the draft. Right now, it looks like Mekhi Becton is holding onto his earlier momentum, and Becton was recently rated the best tackle by a panel of 11 evaluators spoken to by ESPN. This panel includes scouts, executives, coaches, and analysts.

As the chart shows, Becton was our top-ranked tackle, edging Wills for first in total points with 32 and in first-place votes (5-4). The voting highlights how widely opinions vary when assessing the tackles at the top of this draft class.

Becton beat out Alabama’s Jedrick Wills for the top spot with 32 points compared to 31 – but had a large advantage to Tristan Wirfs and Andrew Thomas, who received 23 and 22 votes respectively and were some distance behind the top two.

Despite that fact, it’s Wills that Jordan Raanan links to the Giants rather than Becton, partly because Wills is a player that the Giants staff has more experience with due to Alabama connections.

The Giants already have former Alabama running backs coach Burton Burns on staff. He has seen what Wills can do and would likely provide another stamp of approval. Wills would be an ideal fit in an offense expected to be more run-heavy than most. No wonder the buzz on Wills to the Giants has been building in league circles. He would start on the right side and, depending on how things shake out over the next few seasons, potentially move to the left.

It’s also worth noting that Wills might come at a lower cost in draft position than Becton – and with multiple teams sitting below the Giants and looking to take a quarterback, there may be a chance to trade down a few spots and take Wills while Becton on the other hand would require keeping the fourth overall pick. At least, that’s the case if other teams value Becton as much as pre-draft analysis predicts – something that’s never a given in the chaotic NFL Draft.

New York Jets: One sure-fire player in the 2020 NFL Draft to help Gang Green

New York Jets, Jedrick Wills

The New York Jets have several holes to fill, but they can select one sure-fire player to bolster the offense.

While the Jets allowed Robby Anderson to leave in free agency, signing Breshad Perriman as his replacement, the offense didn’t necessarily get ‘better.’ Bolstering the unit to ensure Sam Darnold and LeVeon Bell play to the peak of their abilities should be the priority moving forward, which is where the 2020 NFL Draft comes into play.

Jets’ general manager Joe Douglas reinforced the offensive line this offseason, signing Connor McGovern to play center, Greg Van Roten at right guard, George Fant at left tackle, and Alex Lewis at left guard. The only position in need of an upgrade is right tackle, where they can find a stellar player in Jedrick Wills.

If Wills falls to the 11th pick, he will undoubtedly be the selection for the Jets, who could use a top-end start and potential All-Pro tackle to solidify the spot for years to come. While it might not be as sexy as picking Jerry Jeudy or Ceedee Lamb, Darnold and Bell benefit the most, completing a rebuild of the front five on offense.

What would Wills bring to the New York Jets?

NFL.com’s Lance Zierlein describes Wills as a fundamental genius with quick, accurate punches. His varied approach toward taking on pass rushers allows him to develop a rhythm and use his vision to locate stunts and diverse blitzes.

After watching Wills extensively, I saw one consistent trait — his technique is astounding. His timely punches and footwork compare to NFL starters with ease and having protected Tua Tagovailoa’s blindside ay Alabama, we know he’s faced off against worthy talent.

If the Jets are willing to spend a top draft pick at the right tackle position, they must go with Wills and never look back. It’s possible he’s selected prior to the 11th overall pick, but passing on a cemented talent at an essential position for the next five years-plus would be a mistake.

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 Set To Interview The Draft’s Top Tackles

New York Jets, Jedrick Wills

The New York Giants are almost certainly either going to take an offensive lineman or a player on the defensive front with their first round pick in the 2020 NFL Draft – trade or no trade. Those are the two biggest positions of need for the team, the former because the Giants have invested heavily in quarterback Daniel Jones and the latter because the defense has struggled in the sacks department for years. However, there’s few leads yet on just which way the Giants are leaning.

They have one pick in the first round and no matter what they select, there’s still likely going to be a large gap in the team that needs to be filled somehow before the Giants can start winning.

According to Jordan Raanan, though, the Giants are looking at the offensive line positions closely when evaluating draft prospects in the final buildup to the draft itself.

The Giants are certainly putting their time and attention toward the top offensive tackles during the pre-draft process, according to sources. They have scheduled video call sessions in the coming weeks with the top tackles, which include Iowa’s Tristan Wirfs and Georgia’s Andrew Thomas. Louisville’s Mekhi Becton and Alabama’s Jedrick Wills are also expected to be in that mix. The Giants were also supposed to have dinner with the prospects before their pro days, which were canceled because of the coronavirus pandemic. So there seems to be little doubt the Giants are contemplating a tackle with their top pick.

The Giants drafting any one of these players would almost certainly mean missing out on a premier defensive player at the outside linebacker or the edge rusher position, which are both needs of the Giants. Chase Young was, for much of the season, the player linked to the Giants. Now that it looks like the team is out of the position where they could draft him, Isaiah Simmons is the top defensive player mocked to the Giants.

But on the other hand, the team has learned the problems of having a bad offensive line through multiple failed roster additions that haven’t picked up the quality on the line to the required standard. It’s been a number of years that the Giants have had this problem and at some point, the team is going to have to spend a high draft pick or spend big in free agency for one or more players on the line to help in stepping up.

It’s true that the Giants need sacks but it’s also true that the Giants are heavily invested in Daniel Jones, and Jones’ success is directly tied to having proper protection. Could this be the reasoning for the Giants focusing this much on the tackle position? Based on the team’s plans for meetings, that may very well be the case.

Are the Cowboys Pursuing Trade For New York Jet’s Cornerstone?

New York Jets, Jamal Adams

The Cowboys went down to the wire with the Jets at the trade deadline in negotiations for star safety Jamal Adams. The New York Jets wanted a 1st Round Pick and 2 Seconds. The Cowboys wouldn’t budge on their offer of a 1st and a day 3 selection. The Jets kept Jamal and after briefly being a cause of unrest among the Jets faithful, he went right back to bringing the energy to the defense and team as a whole.

Now, the New York Jets are in an offseason where they’ve spent a small amount of money on short term deals. They’ve invested in the offensive line and are seemingly going to invest a bulk of their draft picks into the offense as well. The Jets are preparing to rebuild this team into a contender in the future, not next season. This means they need to keep the talent they do have on defense for the long haul, so the Jets need to either lock up Jamal for the future or trade him and get compensation for him.

What Could A Deal Look Like?

I and many Jets fans would prefer he remains in Green and White, but the Cowboys are reportedly monitoring the situation between the Jets and Jamal and may be prepping to attempt a trade again. If the Cowboys did make an offer, it would likely include their 1st rounder, their 2nd or 3rd rounder and maybe another pick. The Jets would hypothetically then have a selection to add one of the top offensive linemen at 11 and add a receiver with the Cowboys selection. This would give them much more flexibility and help build for the long term with more guys on less expensive deals.

Is It Really Worth It?

Although some people discredit Jamal’s impact because of how the safety position is valued, he’s more than just a typical safety. Adams is an absolute monster on defense. He led the team in sacks last year with Jordan Jenkins. He’s also masterful in coverage and tackling. Adams is not just a force on the field but also in the locker room. Adams actively recruits players, is the voice of the team and the captain of the defense. He’s well regarded within the Jets community and the league as a whole. The Jets struck gold with Jamal Adams. No matter who they could add with the Cowboys picks, those players couldn’t have the same impact Jamal has had. Jamal Adams needs to remain a Jet, not just for now, but for a very long time.

New York Jets #MockDraftMonday: April 6, 2020

New York Jets

After Joe Douglas’ public comments, this week’s New York Jets mock draft from our experts gains position unanimity with the 11th overall pick.

With a healthy haul of veteran blockers, one would expect the New York Jets to use the 11th overall pick of the upcoming NFL Draft on a so-called “exciting” pick. Perhaps a receiver could be called to replace Robby Anderson. A depleted pass rush could use a sack threat. Even the secondary could use a bit more help, even with some big names lined up.

To paraphrase Jets general manager Joe Douglas…not so fast.

In his first public comments of the offseason, Douglas seemed to hint that the Jets’ offensive line renovation might not be completed just yet.

“I think there’s a real shortage of quality offensive linemen in the NFL,” Douglas said in a Wednesday afternoon conference call, per Ralph Vacchiano of SNY. “We’re going to do our best to get as many quality ones as we can because you can never have too many.”

Geoff Magliocchetti

1st Round (11th overall): OT Andrew Thomas, Georgia
2nd Round (48th overall): WR K.J. Hamler, Penn State
3rd Round (68th overall): EDGE Julian Okwara, Notre Dame
3rd Round (79th overall): CB Bryce Hall, Virginia
4th Round (120th overall): S Jeremy Chinn, Southern Illinois
5th Round (158th overall): RB AJ Dillon, Boston College
6th Round (191st overall): LB Mohamed Barry, Nebraska
6th Round (211th overall): K Rodrigo Blankenship, Georgia

The flexibility we thought the Jets would have at the 11th pick seems to have gone by the wayside with Douglas’ apparent commitment to a blocker. But that flexibility can present itself in new ways on draft weekend. With the depth and imperative transactions the Jets have gained and made via free agency, the Jets have plenty of freedom with their remaining seven picks. The wiggle room could be especially advantageous when it comes to their three picks in the Friday session.

Douglas is apparently intrigued by the deep blocking class available on the first day. Even if Thomas goes within the first ten picks, Mekhi Becton, Tristan Wirfs, and Thomas’ SEC compatriot Jedrick Wills should be readily available. Day two would allow the Jets to fill one of their biggest remaining needs: receiving and defensive depth. Hamler is a Friday gem that would immediately contribute to any offense, while Okwara would fill the necessary pass rush void in order to start giving Josh Allen nightmares. The trend of immediate depth contributors extends into day three. Chinn can work alongside the established strong duo of Jamal Adams and Marcus Maye, while Dillon becomes a much-needed spell option for Le’Veon Bell.

Brendan Carpenter

1st Round (11th overall): OT Andrew Thomas, Georgia
2nd Round (48th overall): WR Tee Higgins, Clemson
3rd Round (68th overall): EDGE Bradlee Anae, Utah
3rd Round (79th overall): WR Bryan Edwards, South Carolina
4th Round (120th overall): CB Troy Pride Jr., Notre Dame
5th Round (158th overall): DE Jonathan Greenard, Florida
6th Round (191st overall): LB Mohamed Barry, Nebraska
6th Round (211th overall): K Rodrigo Blankenship, Georgia

Taking a receiver with their first pick is tempting, but the Jets would opt to go the safe route to solidify the remaining spot on their offensive line. I originally had the Jets selecting Jalen Reagor out of TCU on day two, but at 6’4″ with a long frame, Higgins would be tough to pass on. He knows how to show up in big games as well. The receiving trend continues with the 6’3, 212-pound Edwards, but there would be some question marks. He missed his final two games with a knee injury and broke his foot while training for the combine. Despite these setbacks, Edwards is another addition that could have a decent upside. Appropriately, the Jets would use the pick earned from the Leonard Williams trade to Anae (13 sacks in 14 starts last season).

Cornerback is a position of need for Gang Green. With Jeff Okudah most likely going in the top-five in the draft, there is no need to reach for one after that. Getting Pride Jr. in the third round would satisfy a need the Jets desperately need to address. He would slide in to play alongside Pierre Desir and Brian Poole in the secondary. Greenard could immediately contribute on the defensive line, especially if Quinnen Williams is suspended.

Dylan Price

1st Round (11th overall): OT Jedrick Wills, Alabama
2nd Round (48th overall): WR KJ Hamler, Penn State
3rd Round (68th overall): EDGE Joshua Uche, Michigan
3rd Round (79th overall): CB Troy Pride Jr., Notre Dame
4th Round (120th overall): OT Ben Bartch, St. John’s (MN)
5th Round (158th overall): RB Darrynton Evans, Appalachian State
6th Round (191st overall): TE Colby Parkinson, Stanford
6th Round (211th overall): OL Calvin Throckmorton, Oregon

In our last mock, I projected Andrew Thomas would be the pick. This time he was off the board, so Wills becomes the key offensive lineman of the future. He, Bartch and Throckmorton are all incredibly versatile offensive linemen. Bartch and Wills can be starters quickly, while Throckmorton provides depth. Hamler has elite playmaking ability and immediately becomes an excellent weapon for Sam Darnold.

Parkinson also becomes a good weapon, with high potential, who could fight for some reps at tight end. Uche and Pride both can develop behind the starters this year and be groomed to take over in 2021. Evans was a pick in my last mock draft who could be the future back for this team.

Geoff Magliocchetti is on Twitter @GeoffJMags

Why the New York Giants could draft Jedrick Wills with the 4th overall pick

New York Jets, Jedrick Wills

The New York Giants are in need of a left tackle given Nate Solder can’t manage to elevate his play significantly in 2020. After two years of sub-par performances, putting Eli Manning and Daniel Jones’ lives in danger, finding a replacement might be the only option.

There are numerous quality tackles in the upcoming NFL Draft, but spending a top pick on a player who might not even play in 2020 is a significant concern. Solder is still slated to act as the Giants’ starting left tackle, which is a deterrent for a team that could use the extra support. In fact, that point promotes the idea of drafting a developmental prospect in the second-round with a high ceiling.

However, passing on a sure-fire player can be difficult. Alabama right tackle Jedrick Wills represents the cream of the crop in the upcoming draft, but his lack of experience on the left side is a major weakness. Nonetheless, he did cover Tua Tagovailoa’s blind-side, which suggests covering Jones’ bling-side might not be the most challenging transition.

Spending the 4th overall pick on a right tackle doesn’t seem like the best allocation of resources unless the Giants want to start him at his familiar position in 2020 and transition him to left tackle in 2021.

The tackle spots aren’t interchangeable, though, as they require different skill-sets and techniques. Wills commented on that reality, according to AOL.com:

“I took minimum reps at practice being at Alabama,” he explained Wednesday at the NFL combine. “Leading up to this pre-draft process, [I’ve tried] to do both, because I know it’s something that teams will question [me] about.

“Just trying to have that versatility. It’s something that’s new. Any time you have a new position, it’s gonna be a new feeling. It’s something I’m trying to get comfortable in and still working through.”

This tells us that Wills isn’t prepared to start right away on the left side, but that he’s capable of adapting. As a technically sound prospect with great mental and physical attributes, it would be a process to change sides, but I believe it would work seamlessly after one season. The Giants could begin to transition him in 2020 with Solder still starting on the left side, solidifying the position with one of the best prospects at tackle in years.