The New York Giants currently hold six picks in the 2021 NFL Draft, the third-lowest in all of the NFL. If they stay at that number, Dave Gettleman and staff must choose wisely.
Many are curious to see how the Giants handle their 1st round pick at No. 11. Do they trade up, trade down, and if it's neither of those, which position is their top priority? Here we will take a look at a few pros and cons regarding possible scenarios for the G-Men.
The pros for this option are somewhat limited. The main pro is if the Giants believe there is a true can't miss prospect that won't still be available at 11, they get their guy. They would also jump in front of division rival Dallas, who are also in need of upgrades at similar positions. This move would most likely have to be prompted by a confirmation of another team trading to get the player to hope for.
There are plenty of reasons for New York not to do this. With their free agency acquisitions of Kyle Rudolph, TE, and Kenny Golladay, WR, their needs have shifted to focus more on the defensive side of the ball, primarily at EDGE rusher. The first reason they shouldn't trade up is that out of this 2021 draft pool, there isn't a standout defensive player like you may have found in a Bosa or Clowney that is worth this big of a move. The second reason is there has been very little noise about teams that wish to trade up for an EDGE rusher. With their pick at 11, and the Top 10 possibly going to be all offense, the need to move up just isn't there.
Compared to trading up, there are a lot more pros here. With an already limited number of picks, the 11th pick becomes very valuable and can serve as a way for the Giants to collect more picks this year as well as the next few drafts. Ian Rapoport of NFL Network reported on Tuesday that the Giants were "considering" trading down from the 11th pick. The Patriots, who have ten draft picks, the Bears, and WFT all with eight picks, may have some interest in moving up to beat the others to drafting a QB. If they do trade down, they get some much-needed draft picks in later rounds. You also have to notice that if they were to trade down to any of those teams listed, this EDGE class will still have promising players available around pick 20.
I would advise the Giants to proceed with caution if they do trade down. If they are eyeing an EDGE rusher, the 11th pick is a prime spot. The Cowboys may be the only team to pick a defensive player before them. It is not out of the question for the entire TOP 10 to be just offensive picks, so if the Giants wish to draft a defensive player, it would be like having the first pick of the draft- just at pick 11. They wouldn't gain any draft capital, but they'd have the chance to get a top tear EDGE rusher and their guy.
Draft an EDGE Rusher
I'd love for the Giants to draft an EDGE rusher. Not only are they placed in an excellent position to get their top guy, but this defense stays young and strong under DC Patrick Graham. With the current D-Line, the pressure comes from the inside with Leonard Williams, who was the team's sack leader last year. This past season all of the top pressures on the line came from interior linemen, really exposing the weakness on the outside. If the Giants give pressure on the outside and have Williams waiting for the QB in the middle, every opposing team will face strong competition upfront. The great thing is they fill their needs with this pick early on, and with plenty of prospects to select from.
Despite its great reward, this pick does have a few cons. One could argue that with this deep wide receiver class, many top prospects will be left at 11. If the Giants wish to continue to focus on the offensive side of the ball, an EDGE rusher wouldn't do them any good. If the Giants are fine with their interior linemen handling most of the pressures (even though Dalvin Tomlinson is now gone), Joe Judge and Jason Garret may want to give Daniel Jones even more help to ensure his play accurately shows his abilities.
Draft a Wide Receiver
With a wide receiver at 11, this Giants offense, at least on paper, would be no joke. With the addition of this new receiver, Golladay, and Rudolph this offense would give plenty for Jones to work with. Maybe the coaching staff has a goal to give Daniel Jones all the possible weapons around him, and give him the best chance of success, and if he doesn't work, they know they've got the wrong guy. This new WR will also have the advantage of working around veterans like Shepard and Golladay, but can still grow alongside younger receivers like Darius Slayton.
At this point, we know what the cons are. The Giants wouldn't solve their number one issue at EDGE. If New York were to have their eyes focused on drafting a WR, I don't believe they would have spent all that money in free agency on Kenny Golladay. If the interior line gets injured, they have no one to turn to in order to generate pressure. Despite the strength at this position, New York would miss out on possibly getting the number one EDGE rusher, and leave their one big flaw unsolved.
What is the best option for New York Giants?
It's really for you to decide what you believe the Giants should do. Here are two things I'd think about. Number one is that Dallas is the pick right before them, and if word gets out they want the same EDGE rusher (a need for Dallas as well), don't be shocked if the Giants make a move that may be viewed as impulsive or unnecessary. Number two is that Dave Gettleman's job is on the line this season. As much as the team may need an EDGE rusher, Gettleman will always go back to make himself look good. How does he do that? He does that by giving support to Daniel Jones, the QB he drafted at pick 6 two years ago. What does that entail? Well, Giant's fans, don't be surprised if another receiver is headed to New York this offseason.