NFL Draft 2022: 3 prospects worth New York Giants trading up for
By Zak Musso
Zion Johnson, OT, Boston College
The same reasons the New York Giants should consider trading up for Neal are the reasons the Giants should consider trading up for Zion Johnson.
In the modern-day NFL, outside of having a franchise quarterback, the most important position to have stability in is the offensive line.
To have a functioning offense, something the New York Giants have been looking to field, the quarterback needs time to operate within the pocket, making beefing up the offensive line imperative.
Johnson, a guard from Boston College, is an ideal addition to the Giants’ offensive line. Most mock drafts have Johnson projected as a late first-round pick, with a potential of falling in the early portion of the second round. PFF ranks Johnson as the number 32 overall player on their draft board.
The Giants have more than enough draft capital to trade up into the back-end of the first round with a team that may be looking to accumulate more draft picks and trade down.
In fact, there is some serious speculation that the New York Giants are looking to trade down from either pick five or pick seven, which could give them additional ammo in case they want to move their second-round pick back into the late stages of the first round.
This is similar to what the franchise did in 2019 when they moved back into the first round to take DeAndre Baker.
First-round draft picks come with four-year contracts that include team options for a fifth year, whereas second-round picks just come with four-year contracts. Contractually there is an added incentive for the Giants to explore a potential move up.
Johnson’s greatest attribute is his power and strength. At 6-foot-3 and 213 pounds, Johnson is a physical run blocker. His physicality could open up holes for Saquon Barkley, who has not seen many open spaces to run through in his four years in New York.
PFF graded Johnson with an 84.4 for the 2021 season, which was one of the tops in the country for college football offensive lineman.
An offensive line featuring Johnson and Glowinski at guard, Thomas and Neal at tackle, and Felicano at center, would instantly be the best offensive line the Giants have trotted out in the last decade.