Who are some sleepers the NY Giants should target late in the draft?

New York Giants potential draft pick Tanner Muse (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)
New York Giants potential draft pick Tanner Muse (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images) /
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A sleeper in the draft is a prospect that gets overlooked for whatever reason. Because of the coronavirus pandemic and the uncertainty surrounding the 2020 NFL draft, it will be even more difficult for the NY Giants to find a diamond in the rough in the later rounds.

Despite the increased challenges created by canceled pro days and physicals, the NY Giants can still find special players in the 5th, 6th, and 7th rounds.

After an unspectacular free agency period, it is evident that the front office plans to rebuild through the draft. Joe Judge wants smart, physical, and team-oriented players to come into training camp and compete for playing time.

“I think the biggest thing you look for on the field is smart players who can execute the assignment, who can play situationally aware,’’ Judge said when he was hired in January. “Tough guys, physically and mentally tough. Can they do what’s right for the team when it’s not always what’s right for them? And can they play through some discomfort? You want guys that play fundamentally sound. There are aspects you’re going to evaluate.”

Those criteria that were established at Joe Judge’s introductory press conference might remind NY Giants fans of David Diehl and Ahmad Bradshaw. Both players were late-round picks that eventually earned playing time and starting roles. Both were tough guys, played through injuries, and were integral parts of two championship teams.

David Diehl was a fifth-round pick out of Illinois in 2003. His work ethic, toughness, and football IQ earned him a starting spot as a rookie in 2003. He never possessed elite athletic traits like Tristan Wirfs, but he started every game he played in his eleven-year career (at every position on the offensive line except center.)

Ahmad Bradshaw was a seventh-round pick of the renowned 2007 Giants draft class. His toughness and tenacity was apparent with every rushing attempt (except maybe his game winning TD in Super Bowl 46.) Dave Gettleman should target players with the same kind of grit on day 3 of this year’s draft.

The G-Men would have to get extremely lucky to find their next Diehl or Bradshaw, but they should be looking for players with the traits that made these NY Giants legends great. The players featured in this article share some of the same attributes, and are players I think Gettleman should be targeting in the later rounds.