2014 NFL Draft: New York Giants’ Early Seven-Round Mock
New York Giants' Seven-Round Mock
Even though the New York Giants are a few wins away from being relevant again, it’s never too early to start looking towards the offseason and the upcoming 2014 NFL Draft. There are numerous areas they must improve in, and there won’t be a better opportunity to get better than the draft.
Of those areas needing improvement, one of the biggest concerns is left tackle. The Giants upgraded the right tackle spot last year by drafting Justin Pugh, but Will Beatty isn’t getting the job done on the blindside. If they have any plans of keeping Eli Manning healthy and off of the IR, they need to upgrade the left tackle spot in the near future.
Despite their need at left tackle, the Giants still have holes across the board. Other spots along the offensive line including both guards need immediate upgrades. Wide receiver is a concern with a couple veterans headed for free agency. With little production from the tight end spot, the Giants could also use a new pair of hands at the position. Even middle linebacker could use an upgrade with age becoming a serious factor.
Either way, the Giants need to make the most of their draft picks in May. The 2014 NFL Draft will offer New York an opportunity to upgrade their roster while addressing the problems that have cropped up during the season.
With that in mind, here’s a look at what the Giants could choose to do with their six current draft picks when the 2014 NFL Draft finally rolls around.
1st Round: Jake Matthews, OT, Texas A&M
The Giants have fielded one of the worst offensive lines in the NFL this season, which is why going after the best upgrades possible is a top priority for the G-Men. Especially with Beatty providing subpar protection on the left side, a new blindside blocker is a must. With Matthews, the Giants would be getting the best blocker in the 2014 class and an upgrade at left tackle. He’s a dominant run blocker who also has the pass blocking prowess to keep Manning clean.
2nd Round: Gabe Jackson, G, Mississippi State
Both of the Giants’ starting guards are headed for free agency this offseason, which means they need to find some help at the position. More than anything, they need to get David Diehl out of the starting lineup. Jackson is a dominant blocker who paves massive lanes in the run game. He is flat-footed as a pass blocker, but shows impressive athleticism for his size and doesn’t back down against elite opposition. The Giants need an upgrade, and Jackson is exactly that.
3rd Round: Marcel Jensen, TE, Fresno State
So far this season, the Giants have yet to get any sort of consistent production from their tight ends. Brandon Myer has been a bit of a bust, and the other options are limited in terms of potential. Adding a young pass-catcher to the mix will be a big help moving forward. Jensen is an outstanding receiving tight end out of Fresno State who has the ability to stretch seams and make defenses pay. The Bulldogs haven’t used him a bunch, but Jensen definitely has the tools to be a threat in the NFL.
4th Round: Lamin Barrow, ILB, LSU
There’s no denying that Jon Beason has been a nice addition to the Giants defense, but he’s only a stop-gap. New York needs a young, energetic middle linebacker who can be the leader of the defense moving forward. While Barrow isn’t a sure-fire option, there’s reason to be positive about his chances. He’s a sure tackler with tremendous athleticism. He is a bit lacking in the speed department and isn’t great in coverage, but Barrow has the physical tools to make plays in the NFL.
5th Round: L’Damian Washington, WR, Missouri
With Hakeem Nicks unsure to return to New York in 2014, the Giants might want to add some extra talent to their receiving corps during the offseason. Even if they sign someone during free agency, going to the receiver well during the draft couldn’t hurt. That’s where Washington comes in. The Missouri receiver is a tall, lean target with the speed to stretch the field from the flanker spot. Although his thin frame and lack of strength are issues, Washington has the height and hands to contribute early.
6th Round: Larry Webster, DE, Bloomsburg
Even though the second half of the season has been better than the first, the Giants could still use some help at defensive end. Jason Pierre-Paul hasn’t been himself lately and Mathias Kiwanuka has dropped off significantly. By drafting a small-school talent like Webster, the Giants can allow the youngster to come along slowly while developing his raw talents. He has a tall frame, plenty of athleticism and a keen ability to get to the quarterback. It might take a while, but Webster has the potential to be productive.
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