1st RD (26th *from MIA*): Grant Delpit S – LSU
While offensive tackle and edge stand out to me as the two biggest needs for the NY Giants, free safety is not too far behind them, if at all. In today’s game, having a true center fielder with the range to effectively patrol the deep parts of the field is inherently valuable.
Few players’ draft stock took as much of a hit as LSU free safety Grant Delpit’s did in 2019 despite him racking up another consensus All-America selection and another first-team All-SEC pick to boot. The main reason for his steep drop from top-ten to possibly out of the first-round altogether has been his perceived tackling struggles.
His tackling did leave a bit to be desired in his 2019 junior campaign, but not nearly enough for me to pass on a player with such a high ceiling at one of the toughest positions to fill in all of football. Delpit played as a true single-high free safety which is something the NY Giants have long been lacking.
He’s got the size (6’3 205 lbs), the speed (4.39 40 time) and the ball-hawking ability (7 picks in last two years) to make Dave Gettleman pull the trigger here. Julian Love is an intriguing option to continue his transition to free safety, but in this scenario we’re able to slide him back into his natural role of slot corner and in essence fill two holes with one selection.
Delpit was a true difference-maker during his entire LSU career that culminated with the squad winning the 2019 National Title. The rangy safety also brings the added dimension of having true blitzing ability as he racked up 7 sacks in his last two seasons.
There is risk involved here if his tackling issues turn out to be half as bad as some project, as you never want your last line of defense not being a sure tackler. However, I’m not nearly as worried about it as most and it hasn’t popped out to me nearly as much while watching his tape as I’ve heard others discussing it.
For all of his “troubes”, Delpit still took home the 2019Jim Thorpe Award, given to the nation’s best defensive back.
Antonine Winfield Jr. is another intriguing option here, but we’re going with the extra size and SEC pedigree here.