New York Giants: After Myles Garrett, This NFL Draft Is A Crapshoot
By Curt Macysyn
In 1981, the New Orleans Saints ignored drafting Lawrence Taylor and selected halfback George Rogers.
It was a decision that affected two franchises, as Taylor helped the New York Giants win two Super Bowls in his New York career. Rogers, while a very good NFL back, never lived up to his billing as a former Heisman Trophy winner.
This year, the Cleveland Browns are facing similar decision in this year’s NFL Draft. In this case, the Browns must decide between their quarterback of the future and Texas A&M star Myles Garrett.
Is it even much of decision? As time passes, the calls for Garrett get stronger.
"“I think he’s a lock for the number one pick,” [Daniel] Jeremiah said on the SEC Network, according to Cleveland.com on March 31, 2017. “I think when you look back over the last decade, this is one of the easier calls to make. It’s a premier position, premier player. He’s the best guy.”"
With regard to the quarterback situation, Browns’ fans are surely saying “been there, done that.” So the prudent play is to go after Garrett and build a solid defensive unit, right?
Then again, what if Mitchell Trubisky or DeShaun Watson turns into the next Andrew Luck?
Back in 1981, the path to the Super Bowl ran through a team’s backfield (pun intended). Every playoff contender had top rung halfback. Names like Tony Dorsett, Franco Harris, Earl Campbell and Billy Sims littered the landscape. In fact, George Rodgers led the league in rushing yards and yards per game in 1981. Even though he left football by the age of 29, he was, at worst, a solid NFL player.
Fast forward to the current draft, and see that the Browns’ decision is not comparable. None of the quarterbacks has a résumé like Rogers did back in 1981. But the pass-heavy NFL, requires teams to have a solid, if not spectacular, signal caller. The Browns have not had that player in a very long time.
NFL Draft: Myles’ Measurables
According to NFL.com, Garrett is a combination of speed and strength. His 4.64 second forty-yard dash time, combined with 33 bench press repetitions (225 lbs.) is evidence of this.
CBS Sports says of Garrett:
"The clear top need in Cleveland is at quarterback but frankly it would be a stunner if anyone other than Garrett was the first pick, as he is simply the best player in the draft. Garrett lived up to his hype at the Combine, dazzling with his combination of size (6-4, 272), power (33 repetitions of 225 pounds) and speed (4.64) and explosiveness (41-inch vertical)."
Last year, Cleveland obviously was not sold on Carson Wentz, and they were able to leverage some assets in a trade with the Philadelphia Eagles. Need I remind you that the Browns won a single game in 2016.
Most of the Browns’ problems emanated from the revolving door quarterback position. The team took a free agent gamble with Robert Griffin III, which was clearly ill-advised. In essence, their scouts and management felt RG III was a better option than Carson Wentz.
They were wrong.
In this case, when everyone tells you that Myles Garrett is the best player in the NFL Draft, don’t get cute. You cannot afford to get cute again. Your season ticket holders don’t come to the game to review next year’s draft possibilities.
NFL Draft: New York Giants
Popular thought has the New York Giants continuing with an offensive upgrade in the NFL Draft. With as many as eight of the first 10 picks possibly being defensive players, offensive talent could be shuffled downward.
The wild cards become the quarterbacks.
If teams over-draft Mitchell Trubisky and DeShaun Watson, this helps the G-Men. For example, if somehow Watson and Trubisky both go in the top 10, then the running back back trio (Fournette, McCaffrey, Cook) could get pushed into a later draft status.
One potential outcome might be that Cook drops into the Giants lap at 23. Or if the Denver Broncos have the choice between Christian McCaffrey and Ryan Ramczyk, does Elway pass up his former teammate’s kid?
Related Story: New York Giants: Five Reasons To Draft Christian McCaffrey
Then offensive tackle Ryan Ramczyk (Wisconsin) may surface as the Giants’ selection.
Big Blue should also hope that the trio of talented receivers, Corey Davis, Mike Williams, John Ross, get snapped up before their selection. It would be hard to imagine that New York grabs a wideout after signing Brandon Marshall in free agency.
If John Ross happens to be available at 23, do you really think the Giants select him?
And if the team passes on Ross, will Jerry Reese still say he went with the “best available player” if the selection happens to be Zach Cunningham?
Here are the New York Giants needs, in order of priority:
- Offensive tackle
- Running back
- Defensive tackle
- Tight end
- Offensive guard/center
- Wide receiver
This draft can go in any number of directions after the Garrett selection. The Giants need to have an all encompassing game plan, so as to be ready for any and all contingencies.
For example, if Fournette falls to them, is he their guy? If not, have a trade partner ready to go. Ditto for John Ross.
Do the Giants have a first-round grade on any offensive lineman, other than Ramczyk? If not, then onto Plan B, if he is taken.
Finally, surely the team has a perfect storm draft board, and that being the case, who is the guy that brings the combination of physical talent and established credentials to the table. Draft that guy and don’t look back.