Revisiting NY Giants’ 2018 NFL Draft: What ‘mistakes’ were made? What could’ve been different?

New York Giants running back Saquon Barkley (26) (Robert Deutsch-USA TODAY Sports)
New York Giants running back Saquon Barkley (26) (Robert Deutsch-USA TODAY Sports) /
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NY Giants
B.J. Hill #95 and Lorenzo Carter #59 of the New York Giants (Photo by Sarah Stier/Getty Images) /

Round 3 – Pick No. 66: LB Lorenzo Carter, Georgia

Round 3 – Pick No. 69: DE B.J. Hill, N.C. State

The NY Giants held two of the first five picks in the third-round, and used both to address an anemic front-seven in hopes of bolstering a pass rush that has for years lacked a dominant edge presence.

Carter, who did not fill up the stat sheet while at Georgia, producing just 14 sacks and 21.5 tackles for loss on the edge of the Bulldogs’ dominant defense, the Giants hoped would anchor a rebuilt linebacking corps for years to come.

Fast forward three seasons, and while Carter has flashed moments of explosiveness and productivity, he has been wildly inconsistent. Prior to rupturing his Achilles tendon in Week 5 this season, Carter has produced just 9.5 career sacks and 103 total tackles in 35 games.

Meanwhile, Hill saw his playing time decrease dramatically the past two seasons following the Giants’ acquisition of Leonard Williams.

Hill has averaged 38 total tackles and 2.5 sacks over his first three seasons, essentially as a rotational defensive lineman.

What might have been different?

Outside linebacker Fred Warner was chosen one selection after the Giants chose Hill, by the San Francisco 49ers, and was named a First-Team All-Pro this season while averaging 122 total tackles in each of his first three seasons.

Derrick Nnadi, Pro Football Focus’ No. 24 ranked interior defensive lineman, went off the board six picks after Hill and has consistently graded higher than Hill.

Baltimore came away with offensive tackle Orlando Brown in Round 3, and Brown has been a stabilizing force along the Ravens’ offensive line en route to two consecutive Pro Bowl berths.

Meanwhile, the Dallas Cowboys chose wide receiver Michael Gallup, who has averaged 819 receiving yards and just over four touchdowns in his first three seasons, while emerging as one of the game’s more lethal slot receivers.