With the NFL Draft set to kick off on Thursday night, the Giants must wait for 31 other teams to make their picks before selecting their newest player. Since 2004, the Giants have hit home runs with each of their first round picks. All eight of these players (Eli Manning, Corey Webster, Mathias Kiwanuka, Aaron Ross, Kenny Phillips, Hakeem Nicks, JPP, and the Prince) have each won at least one Super Bowl championship and have been instrumented to the Giants success. How many other teams can boast such an impressive track record?
The Prince dealt with injuries last year and didn’t make a huge impact, but the raw ability is there and he’ll have this chance to set-up this season after Ross signed with Jacksonville. Outside of the Giants, the Ravens (Michael Oher, Ladarius Webb), Packers (Aaron Rodgers, BJ Raji, Clay Matthews, Randall Cobb), and Lions (Matt Stafford, Ndamukong Suh) have posted similiar success, but do not have the depth of talent that the Giants have obtained.
While it’s nearly impossible to predict who the Giants will draft, Mike provided some draft profiles here, here, here, and here. Of note, I really, really Stanford TE, Coby Fleener. Fleener kind of reminds me of Kevin Boss and his production is something the Giants sorely missed last year. However, the Niners pick ahead of the Giants and Jim Harbough recruited Fleener at Stanford. Granted, the Niners have Vernon Davis, Mario Manningham, Michael Crabtree, and Randy Moss but adding Fleener would give Alex Smith another target and blocker.
Ultimately, the Giants will likely stick to their guns and pick their best available player. Don’t be surprised if Jerry Reese drafts another high upside defensive end that turns into an All-Pro in two seasons.