It is no secret to anyone reading this, but the New York Giants are in serious need of defensive talent. At the time of this article, the Giants have just $23.2 million of their 2020 cap space allocated to the defensive side of the football. For comparison, that is less than what both Khalil Mack and Aaron Donald will count towards the Bears and Rams respectively. The next closest figure is that of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, which is $42.9 million.
It is without question that the New York Giants will target the defense in both Free Agency and April’s draft. Everyone knows the big name prospects that the Giants may or may not be able to get in the first round. Chase Young, Isaiah Simmons, Derrick Brown and Jeffrey Okudah are all well known and potential targets for Big Blue in the early stages. Yet, with currently 10 picks throughout the entire draft, including compensatory picks, the Giants need to be able to target defenders at every stage.
Who are some other prospects the Giants could target in days 2 and 3?
EDGE Zack Baun – Wisconsin
Zack Baun has been a named mocked to the Giants in the 2nd round by numerous sources. However, he doesn’t have a flashy name like Young, K’Lavon Chaisson or A.J. Epenesa. For Giants fans well in tune with Joe Judge’s plan of versatility, maybe you should get accustomed to it. Baun is a defensive playmaker that will be best suited in a versatile role. His quickness and burst are what will make him stand out in pressure generation. He can quickly fill gaps in the run game, as well. If Zack Baun is indeed a selection for the Giants, look for him to play all over the field for the defense.
CB Damon Arnette – Ohio State
I will not be surprised to see Ohio State’s Damon Arnette sneak into the first round after a good showing in Indianapolis. His skills in press coverage would be well suited for every team in the NFL. Arnette does not have the elite speed most teams may covet in a corner, so safety help is a must. Where he does excel, are his ball skills and short-area abilities.
EDGE Joshua Uche – Michigan
No, this isn’t an article of Big Ten athletes. Joshua Uche is just good. In his interview this week, Jedrick Wills picked Uche when asked who his toughest matchup was in college. That is saying a lot coming from an Alabama prospect. Uche is not the most filled out athlete, but his quickness and bend is top-notch. He has the frame to add more mass, which could really propel him into the top echelon of NFL pass rushers.
S Kyle Dugger – Lenoir-Rhyne
The South Atlantic Conference in NCAA’s Division II is about as far away from the Big Ten as one could get. Kyle Dugger, however, will be competing with top tier talent on Sunday’s. Dugger is another versatile defensive weapon. One could call him a poor man’s Isaiah Simmons. However, if he gets called to play for the New York Giants, they’d very likely hit it rich. Dugger may find the best success transitioning to LB. In fact, he was asked to take part in LB drills at the NFL Combine. He may not have the same skill set as Simmons, but he comes with similar versatility.
LB Akeem Davis-Gaithers – Appalachian State
Another prospect from a “smaller” program, Akeem Davis-Gaithers has the talent that the Giants are looking for. He’s a linebacker that comes with a very good range. In college, he occasionally was asked to cover wide receivers, but absolutely has the athleticism to cover running backs and tight ends in pass defense. Similar to Uche, he could afford to put on some extra pounds. With his hard-hitting mindset, it would be extremely beneficial for him to do so at the next level.
S Shyheim Carter – Alabama
The Giants have had success with Alabama safeties and Shyheim Carter could be the next. Like Landon Collins, Carter does his best work near the line of scrimmage. Another versatile, hybrid player, the New York Giants could very well benefit from his services. Also like Collins, however, he is not someone you’d trust covering a running back or tight end in coverage.
LB Cameron Brown – Penn State
A late-round prospect, Cam Brown is the type of linebacker the Giants have needed. He has incredible range and athleticism. Often being bumped out to cover wide receivers in the slot and tight ends. The Nittany Lions used him quite often in pass defense of the flat zones. He’s got the range to play WILL but will need to bulk up and clean up his tackle finishing for the NFL.