The NY Giants have a clear need at the linebacker position, we examine five potential players they could draft in the 2020 NFL draft.
It is no secret that linebacker has been a position of liability for the NY Giants for a decade now. The last impactful linebacker to don a Giants uniform came in the form of Antonio Pierce, who retired from the league in 2009.
In addition to not having a game-changer in the middle of their defense since Pierce, the Giants have not spent a first-round pick on the position since they drafted Carl Banks in 1984, with the third overall selection. The Banks selection came just three years after the Giants used the second overall pick in the 1981 draft to select Lawrence Taylor, who combined with Banks and fellow Hall of Famer Harry Carson, gave the Giants one of the greatest linebacking corps in football history.
While it will be difficult to ever duplicate the talent that those three linebackers provided to the NY Giants, the team would be wise to invest in a position that is so critical to the success of the defense. With a draft that possesses a plethora of high-end talent at the linebacker position, this could be the year that the Giants finally address their void at the position early in the draft.
Whether or not the Giants’ front office decides to draft a linebacker early in the draft may be contingent upon whether they address the position in free agency. Much like the draft, the free-agent class of linebackers is loaded with high-end talent.
The 2020 free-agent class of linebackers includes names such as Shaq Barrett, Yannick Ngakoue, Markus Golden, Vic Beasley, Cory Littleton, Joe Schobert, Blake Martinez, Danny Trevathan, and Bruce Irvin. With what could end up being close to $85 million in cap space following the release of veteran cap casualties, the Giants may very well decide to use their money in free agency to address their need at linebacker.
However, if the team decides that their money is better spent addressing one of the many other needs on the roster such as offensive line, defensive end, cornerback, safety or wide receiver, or if they are looking for depth at linebacker later in the draft then these five linebackers should be strongly considered in the upcoming draft: