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New York Giants Monday Morning Storylines: First-Round Focus Still a Mystery

May 5th, 2014 at 6:30 AM
By Dan Benton

Welcome to NFL Draft week, Giants fans! The wait is all but over as we only have a few short days to go before the clock officially begins ticking. In the mean time, kick back, relax and enjoy your morning coffee over the following headlines.

Giants’ First Pick Will Give Hint to Concerns About Beatty

For all their issues, it wasn’t long ago the Giants figured they had answers to two important questions: the identities of their starting offensive tackles.

Now they cannot be so sure. They know Justin Pugh is a solid player with the potential to be more, after starting all 16 games as a rookie at right tackle. But what are the Giants to make of Will Beatty, who is coming off a terrible season and a fractured right leg?

How the Giants answer that question, and how they feel about Beatty, probably will be revealed Thursday night, not by words but by deed, by a move they will or won’t make. If they select an offensive tackle in the first round of the NFL Draft — they own the 12th overall pick — it screams loud and clear that there is immediate and long-term concern about Beatty. If the Giants skip on a tackle, it means they are fairly confident Beatty can return to form in complete health, because no player they take after the first round should comfortably be projected to be a first-year starter.

With Many Gaps to Fill, Giants Pose a First-Round Draft Mystery

Since last year’s N.F.L. draft, the Giants suffered through a humiliating 0-6 start to the 2013 season, missed the playoffs, lost their starting running back to a serious neck injury and watched as a big-name receiver and two of the team’s most productive defensive linemen left via free agency.

Oh, and the franchise quarterback still has a protective boot on his left ankle for an injury sustained more than four months ago.

It was only a year ago at the draft that the Giants thought they were just trying to plug a few holes in a veteran lineup. People expected them to be conservative and take an offensive lineman, and they did with the first-round selection of Justin Pugh, who started every game in 2013. But with the team’s having many needs at this year’s draft, the Giants’ intentions are less obvious.

Giants Need Better Production from this Draft

When Giants co-owner John Mara issued his now-legendary description of the point-scoring side of the ball as "broken" in January, he went on to say that the team needed to change the way it drafts its players.

They have won two Super Bowls with Jerry Reese as general manager, but the Giants have drafted only two Pro Bowl players in the eight drafts in which Reese has been in charge of the picks: wide receiver Steve Smith, who isn't even playing football anymore, and defensive end Jason Pierre-Paul.

They've found some gems in undrafted players such as Victor Cruz and brought in top-tier talent such as Antrel Rolle and Jon Beason, but when it comes to replenishing their ranks each spring, the Giants have picked more duds than studs. Which is why this year, in Reese's ninth draft, he's looking for as close to a sure thing as he can get.

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Tags: Antrel Rolle, Football, Jason Pierre-Paul, Jerry Reese, John Mara, Jon Beason, Justin Pugh, New York, New York Giants, NFL, Steve Smith, Victor Cruz, Will Beatty

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7 Responses to “New York Giants Monday Morning Storylines: First-Round Focus Still a Mystery”

  1.  Krow says:

    I think the bit about Beatty is 100% right. Especially if it’s Lewan, who does not project to other positions.

  2.  GIANTT says:

    First of all , I have to say I understand the point but I dont necessarily agree with it
    In the past the Giants have been known to pick BPA even with a position that has depth . I think the obvious thought here is JPP . At the time DE seemed to be a position of one of the teams strengths and his pick a bit superfluous . I can see the Giants looking at a deep draft like this and stocking up with value picks and I would think that if they saw great value in a Lewan or Donald or Ebron then the pick would be made and not necessarily b/c of team need .
    If Lewan was the pick and he only projected to one position and he was a better player than Beatty then I could see the Giants picking him and maybe Beatty moving inside .
    I just think that the Giants could , with the extra time before the draft get a better idea of needs down the road and load up with cheap rookie contracts to replace possibly very expensive future second contracts .
    I am probably saying a lot of this b/c Im bored and I just want the draft to come and go .

    •  Krow says:

      As you point out, there is most definitely a “need” factor when it comes to the draft. It’s not 100% of the decision, but it’s quite significant.

      The point is … if the team thinks someone is a game-changing talent … or a potential Pro Bowler … then the position he plays will have much less bearing on the decision. JPP is the most recent example … but the legendary LT is the most glaring. Therefore we could see Evans or Ebron be the guy at #12 … depending on what the team thinks of them.

      Also … there’s a chance they have a line on a lesser known OT who they plan on selecting in a later round. Could happen. Has happened.

  3.  kujo says:

    I agree that taking a guy like Lewan or Martin would illuminate an awful lot about the team’s perception of the long term viability and reliability of Beatty, who has previously been described as a “frustrating” and “slow-healer.”

    But there’s no other position for Beatty; we’ve been over this time and time again, and the idea that a guy who’s never been more than good against the run, and who seems to have developed a case of the slows, is going to all of a sudden be switched to right tackle, much less INSIDE, is absurd.

    Beatty will either be our left tackle, or someone else’s.

    •  Begiant says:

      Unfortunately it would be hard to get rid of Beatty. His dead money if we cut him this year (2014) would be around 15mil, in 2015 it would be around 7.5mil and in 2016 it would be around 5mil according to Spotrac.com. Hopefully, Beatty turns his play around and solidifies his position with a top 15 season.

  4.  Begiant says:

    Ebron makes a lot of sense at 12. McAdoo was a TE coach for six years in GB and Ebron fits BPA and need right around 12. I have a hard time imagining Reese drafting a TE in the first round, but it sounds like we are putting a lot of faith in McAdoo and what a better way is there to help him out than to draft the best TE in the draft.

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