The latest NY Giants mock draft adds Alabama WR DeVonta Smith to Daniel Jones’ supporting cast in 2021 NFL Draft
The NY Giants have morphed into a run-based offense, even without running back Saquon Barkley, as quarterback Daniel Jones continues to be a playmaker with his legs and while executing a bevvy of RPOs.
However, if the 2021 NFL Draft plays out the way one analyst believes it will, the NY Giants will be giving Jones a weapon to give the aerial attack a boost.
In The Athletic‘s Dane Brugler’s first 2021 NFL Mock Draft, the Giants select Alabama wide receiver DeVonta Smith with the No. 19 overall pick:
"On paper, Smith doesn’t belong in the top-20 conversation due to poor size (175 pounds) and average speed (4.5 seconds in the 40-yard dash). But on tape, he is one of the more explosive wide receivers in this class with elite ball skills and feel for the position that leads to production. Smith will make Jones a better quarterback."
As Brugler notes, Smith’s 6-foot-1 and 175-pound frame won’t push him up many draft boards, but he is currently averaging 14.9 yards per reception and has caught 72 passes for 1,074 yards and 12 scores for the Crimson Tide this season.
Part of what makes Smith so productive is that he is an elite route-runner, with plenty of toughness to make the contested catches over the middle of the field, and the kind of reliable hands that make him a quarterback-friendly target.
Whether it’s leaping to catch a high-point pass in the end zone or picking a ball inches off the turf, Smith has tremendous body control. If he can hold up at his size, Smith could develop into a top-flight receiver and be a nice addition to the Giants’ arsenal alongside Darius Slayton and Sterling Shepard.