4. Andrew Thomas
Upgrading the offensive line and specifically, the left tackle position is certainly a priority for the NY Giants this offseason. The Giants felt they had the left tackle position addressed when they signed Nate Solder to a four-year $62 million contract in 2018. However, Solder has wildly underperformed, leaving the Giants in desperate need of an upgrade at the position.
Enter the University of Georgia’s Andrew Thomas. Thomas is the highest-rated tackle in an extremely deep tackle group entering the 2020 NFL draft. If the Giants want the best at the position, Thomas would be their guy.
At 6’5″ and 320-pounds, Thomas definitely has the tall, girthy frame of an NFL tackle. Currently, he possesses elite run blocking ability and projects as a franchise left tackle in a power blocking scheme. However, while his pass blocking isn’t poor, there are concerns about him in pass blocking situations in a system with a quarterback needs additional time in the pocket.
Thomas needs to improve on his footwork in pass blocking and can have issues with better pass rushers. This would serve as a concern for the Giants who have a quarterback with a tendency to hold on to the ball a bit too long, as they would likely want Thomas to start at left tackle immediately.
That said, Thomas does project to be an excellent tackle in the NFL. He has quick feet, fluid hips, and is extremely athletic. Thomas does an excellent job with framing blocks well in pass blocking situations, has precision timing and a very high football IQ.
The player comparisons given to Andrew Thomas by draft experts should leave Giants fans excited about the possibility of drafting him. The player comparisons that he has drawn most are to Ronnie Stanley, Jason Peters and Trent Williams, all of whom are Pro Bowl tackles.
As good as Thomas may be, and as much as the Giants need a significant upgrade at left tackle, Thomas might not represent the best option for the Giants with the fourth pick. This is less of an indictment about the abilities of Thomas and is strictly in regards to the fact that the tackle position is so deep that quality franchise tackles are expected to be available in the second round of the draft or later. As a result, the Giants would be wise to explore other options.