The New York Football Giants made two first-round draft selections this year at number five and number seven (via CHI). With a new regime in place, fans were optimistic GM Joe Schoen and head coach Brian Daboll would correct the Giants draft mistakes from years past. The first round played out nearly perfect for the Giants as they were able to fill major needs with highly regarded talent.
Pick 5: Oregon Edge, Kayvon Thibodeaux
The Giants selected the incredibly versatile Thibodeaux from Oregon. Thibodeaux was one of the most controversial players in this draft, with questions being raised about his work ethic and big personality. However, that didn't matter to first-time head coach Brian Daboll and general manager, Joe Schoen. The two have put great emphasis on drafting players with character and unmatchable perseverance, proving those rumors false.
Thibodeaux recorded 126 total tackles, 19 sacks, and 35.5 tackles for loss in just 32 games. He has loads of potential on the field, while his personality radiates off the field. He fits perfectly with the flash of the Giants in New York.
As New York recorded 34 sacks last season, 22nd in the league, improvement on the edge is crucial. New York has a responsibility to build its team from the inside out. Thibodeaux is a monster on the field who, once he reaches his full potential, can lead this Giants defense along with Blake Martinez to complete dominance.
Pick 7: Alabama OT, Evan Neal
Arguably the highest-graded offensive tackle in the draft, the mildly tempered Neal, unlike his fellow exuberant first-round pick Thibodeaux, brings a focused and business-oriented energy. He should be a day-one starter as he bookends former first-round draft pick, Andrew Thomas at the tackle position. Neal can play every position on the line besides center, bringing a level of versatility the Giants are in dire need of.
During his time at Alabama, he recorded 15 knock-downs throughout 1,200 snaps, which was a team-high. Neal helped lead Alabama to a Top 10 offense in CFB. High praise comes from Alabama Head Coach, Nick Saban saying Neal was an "outstanding player."
Neal is going to help anchor this offensive line as Daniel Jones fights for his job this season. Neal starting offers the Giants the ability to design versatile schemes, capable of opening up playing with zone and gap running attacks.
These two picks fit perfectly into the style of play the Giants are aiming to complete. Tough players, both with high ceilings, offer an intense sense of promise as Big Blue welcomes in the new regime under Joe Schoen and Brian Daboll.
Sadie Frank is a high school writer from northern New Jersey. On top of writing for Jersey Sporting News, Sadie has her own football podcast, The Football Buzz. The Football Buzz podcast covers all teams and players in the league. You can find The Football Buzz on Spotify, Anchor, Google Podcasts, Breaker, Pocket Casts, and RadioPublic.