NFL Mock Draft 2022: New York Giants fill two biggest needs in Round 1?
The New York Giants bolster both lines of scrimmage, filling two glaring needs, in latest NFL Mock Draft projection
It’s no secret that the New York Giants’ roster has no shortage of holes at key positions.
From uncertainty at quarterback, a dramatically underachieving wide receiving corps, to the lack of a dominant edge presence and dire need for as many as four new starters along the offensive line, the Giants‘ new general manager is going to have their work cut out for them.
Fortunately, the New York Giants own a pair of top-10 picks in this spring’s 2022 NFL Draft, currently scheduled to pick No. 5 and No. 7 overall.
In Pro Football Focus’ latest 2022 mock draft projection, the New York Giants fill two of their most glaring needs; an offensive tackle to pair opposite Andrew Thomas, and an edge presence, with their two first-round picks:
"PICK NO. 5: NEW YORK GIANTS: OT IKEM EKWONU, N.C. STATEAt 6-foot-4 and 320 pounds, Ekwonu has guard-tackle versatility but earned a legitimate shot to start his NFL career at offensive tackle after his spectacular 2021 campaign at left tackle with the Wolfpack. He earned a 91.6 overall grade and 93.8 run-blocking grade across more than 800 offensive snaps this season, the latter of which ranks sixth among all single-season marks for Power Five tackles since 2014. He’s a true road grader in the run game with improved polish and footwork in pass protection. A player with his kind of skill set shouldn’t fall past the first 10 picks in the draft."
Daniel Jones was sacked 22 times in just 11 games this past season, which underscores the need for dominant and consistent pass-protection presence up front, which Ekwonu would go a long way towards providing.
With the No. 7 overall choice, PFF projects the New York Giants mine one of the more intriguing edge rushers in this year’s class:
"PICK NO. 7: NEW YORK GIANTS (VIA CHICAGO): EDGE GEORGE KARLAFTIS, PURDUEKarlaftis will get tagged as just a lunchpail type with a high motor in a lot of lazy analysis this draft season, but he’s so much more than that. The 6-foot-4, 275-pounder was extremely productive for Purdue this season and should surprise with his athletic testing at the combine."
Karlaftis is one of those prospects who is much higher on the boards of teams and NFL executives than he is viewed by fans and media.
Last season, Karlaftis produced 4.5 sacks, forced two fumbles, and produced an 87.2 overall grade from Pro Football focus.
If the New York Giants’ new general manager takes a page from the teams still alive in the NFL Playoffs, and sees just how dominant they all are along each line of scrimmage, it would be easy to see Karlaftis and Ekwonu in East Rutherford, if they’re available when New York is on the clock.