The draft is a little over a month away. It’s time to start mocking. Of course, this is the first of many. And, to start you off, this is only the first three rounds.
When you look at the Giants needs, there are a couple things that stand out: Middle Linebacker, Offensive Line, Defensive Line. That’s the three big ones. You can say secondary depth, but that’s a later round thing. The Giants need a middle linebacker. I think they should go after Kirk Morrison, costing them a third round pick. But, he’s not on the Giants yet, so that’s the biggest need.
The Giants need some offensive lineman. There’s a couple ways of going about doing this. You can get a mauling right tackle, move Will Beatty over to left tackle, and slide David Diehl to left guard. You can get a premier left tackle, move Diehl to guard, and Beatty to right tackle. You can also get a stud guard, move Betty to left tackle, and Diehl to right tackle.
The last one is defensive tackle. With Chris Canty a question mark, and Jay Alford coming off of surgery, the Giants need a run-stopping defensive tackle.
The Giants will try to address these needs within the first three picks. I’m a proponent of drafting best player available. But, with needs that can be filled through the draft, the Giants should take the best player available of those three positions. If the best player available in the first round is a running back, you take the best available linebacker or lineman, and decide which one is better.
So, with that said, here it is.
WITH THE 15th PICK IN THE 2010 NFL DRAFT, THE NEW YORK GIANTS SELECT….
BRYAN BULAGA, OT, IOWA
I watched a lot of Bulaga this season, and in every game, I was impressed. He’s a left tackle, but I think he will be a stud at right tackle, where I would pencil him in for the 2010 season. Mauling, but quick. Great pass blocker, and improving run blocker. His prospect profile is here.
If the Giants draft Bulaga, the offensive line is a strength again. Diehl moves inside to left guard. Think about that: Diehl is a Pro Bowl left tackle. You move him inside to left guard? He’s an All-Pro. Will Beatty is your left tackle. Beatty was impressive last year in limited duty, and I think, as he continues to add weight and muscle, he will be a stud. The Giants rarely isolate the left tackle, so Beatty won’t have to do it alone. Bulaga is your right tackle. It’s possible that Bulaga starts at left tackle, but I think, coming straight out of college, going right to left tackle is a mistake. He could be there in 2011, and Beatty at right tackle. Your line is pretty good. The comparison I’ve seen about Bulaga is Michael Oher, who had an outstanding season for the Ravens, playing at left and right tackle. If Bulaga can do that, watch out.
WITH THE 46TH PICK IN THE 2010 NFL DRAFT, THE NEW YORK GIANTS SELECT…
ARTHUR JONES, DT, SYRACUSE
With the horrible play of Canty and Bernard, and the departure of Fred Robbins, a defensive tackle is needed. You can argue for Dan Williams in the first round ,but he’s more of a 3-4 tackle. Enter Arthur Jones. His profile is here. He’s a better run defender than a pass rusher, but I think that’s okay. Jay Alford is your pass rushing tackle. You don’t need Jones to be that guy. You need him to stop the run.
I think Jones is an awfully talented player–someone who could play right away. He played on a bad Syracuse team, and still played well. Surrounded by talent, he could put up huge numbers. He’s a smart player. Some say he’s better suited to be a 3-4 defensive end. There’s validity to that, and that may scare the Giants off. Still, as a 4-3 defensive tackle, he’s a heck of a talent, and someone who will produce in Blue.
WITH THE 76th PICK IN THE 2010 NFL DRAFT, THE NEW YORK GIANTS SELECT…
MICAH JOHNSON, ILB, KENTUCKY
Micah Johnson is a prototypical middle linebacker. Athletic, good tackler. His profile is here. The dude has sideline-to-sideline ability, something Antonio Pierce didn’t have. He’s pretty good in pass coverage, but not exceptional. He’s a great tackler.
Some say he could go in the second round, but after hurting his knee in Kentucky’s bowl game, he may fall into the third round, which would be a boon for the Giants. He played in a 3-4 in college, but I think he’s verstaile enough to play in a 4-3.
One problem: I think he’s not a starter right away. I think he contributes right away, especially on special teams, but he won’t start. Outside of Rolando McClain, there isn’t a middle linebacker who can start right away. That’s why the Giants should go after Morrison. I do think Johnson is a potential starter, and a very good one at that. The Giants have to decide if they want to stick with Jon Goff, or go after a vet.
That’s the first three rounds of the Giants draft. The address all their needs, and get players who can play right away. All three were productive, and from big schools. I like the way it plays out. Your thoughts?