There was no doubt the New York Giants needed to add some youth along the defensive line in the 2014 NFL Draft. They addressed that need in the third round with Syracuse defensive tackle Jay Bromley. Bromley has decent size at 6-3, 306 lbs. and has the stats that make people notice. However, Bromley is a raw talent, much like Jonathan Hankins was last year when the Giants selected him in the second round.
The Giants passed on Notre Dame defensive tackle Louis Nix III in order to take Bromley, a move that has many Giants’ fans scratching their heads. Nix was at the top of most experts’ draft boards at defensive tackle whereas Bromley was in the middle of the pack at the position.
Nix might have made more sense because he is ready to step into a rotation right away. He might be better suited for a 3-4 defense as a nose tackle though and obviously the Giants felt there wasn’t a fit. It would be surprising to see Bromley step into the rotation with Mike Patterson, Cullen Jenkins, Markus Kuhn and Hankins right away. The Giants took their time with Hankins last season and Bromley would be no different in 2014.
The Giants believe Bromley can play all over the line and he has shown an ability to get to the passer in college but he is not an impact player. Can he become one? Certainly. Sometimes greatness comes from the most surprising places. The Giants are banking on him to play an integral role on the defensive front soon since they used a third round pick on him.
Bromley will need to step up for the Giants’ sake. They opted to go for a wide receiver in the first round, selecting Odell Beckham over Aaron Donald. They passed on Timmy Jernigan in the second to take center Weston Richburg, who should be the starting center. Then, they passed on Nix in the third to grab Bromley who had 41 total tackle, 13.5 for loss, nine sacks and three forced fumbles last season.
Tom Coughlin and company have to hope Bromley will be able to step in right away and become a solid contributor on the defensive front otherwise this pick could come back to haunt the Giants next season.