The New York Giants are in an advantageous position in tonight’s 2013 NFL Draft. With a large selection of talented players at positions of necessity, they can make a selection with the 19th overall pick that could immediately upgrade their roster.
That being said—whether their selection is Chance Warmack, Alec Ogletree, Tank Carradine, or another burgeoning prospect—their first round selection needs to be a pick that fits the “plug-in and play” criteria.
This principle should apply even in late rounds, where the Giants have often been guilty of selecting more project-oriented players. Seldom have such prospects panned out– Greg Jones of Michigan State University, now with the Jacksonville Jaguars after spending some time in the UFL, was one such player who never developed.
The Giants’ positions of strength on their roster are extremely sound. However, their positions of need are going to require mid-season veteran free agent signings if they aren’t addressed adequately in tonight’s draft.
Save for their offensive line issues, the Giants should look to engage in a defensive-heavy selection process. Their offensive skill positions—pending the health of Hakeem Nicks and Andre Brown—are some of the NFL’s best.
But, if their defense does not receive an immediate upgrade, then Defensive Coordinator Perry Fewell could find himself on the hot seat in extremely rapid fashion.
The draft is an opportunity for teams to alter their fortunes by selecting young athletes—renowned and unknown alike—to usher in a new generation of NFL athlete. However, the Giants are in need of addressing their gaping roster holes early. If their selection is not an immediate starter, then they could find themselves in the Jadeveon Clowney sweepstakes in 2014.
While that may seem like an exaggeration, the Giants play in the competitive NFC East division that saw its 2010 champion Philadelphia Eagles go from first, to third, to worst in a span of three short years. Nothing is outside the realm of possibility.