NFL Mock Draft 2021: NY Giants plug pressing need on defense?

Alabama Crimson Tide defensive back Patrick Surtain II (Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports)
Alabama Crimson Tide defensive back Patrick Surtain II (Mandatory Credit: Kelley L Cox-USA TODAY Sports) /

The NY Giants’ top organizational priority this offseason must be continuing to surround quarterback Daniel Jones with game-breaking caliber talent on offense, but as the Super Bowl champion Tampa Bay Buccaneers showed Sunday night, GM Dave Gettleman can’t afford to neglect the defense.

Last season, defensive coordinator Patrick Graham‘s unit took significant steps forward as veterans James Bradberry and Logan Ryan brought much-needed stability to the secondary. Bradberry made his first Pro Bowl, as a result.

However, as the roster is currently constructed, the NY Giants do not have a legitimate starting caliber cornerback opposite Bradberry.

Gettleman addresses that significant void in Pro Football Focus’ latest NFL Mock Draft projection:

"11. NEW YORK GIANTS: CB PATRICK SURTAIN II, ALABAMASurtain is about as NFL-ready as it gets at the position, and his 88.6 coverage grade in 2019 was the second-highest in the country. While there are numerous other needs on the roster, a corner across from James Bradberry is a big one, as well."

Surtain, 6-foot-2 and 202 pounds, certainly has the profile to play outside. In his final season in Tuscaloosa, Surtain produced 32 total tackles, intercepted one pass and returned it for a touchdown, while breaking up 10 passes and recovering one fumble.

PFF lists Surtain as the No. 16 overall prospect in this year’s draft class and believes that his ability to thrive in press coverage give him a chance to excel at the next level. Surtain’s dominance in man-press situations might make him an ideal fit for Graham’s defense, particularly against some of the standout receivers in the NFC East such as the Cowboys’ CeeDee Lamb and Washington’s Terry McLaurin.

Next. These 5 Chiefs, Buccaneers are ideal fits for Giants. dark

Matt Lombardo is the site expert for GMenHQ, and writes Between The Hash Marks each Wednesday for FanSided. Follow Matt on Twitter: @MattLombardoNFL.