Best & Worst Of The New York Giants Draft Class


Now, I have a confession to make. Unlike Giants general manager Dave Gettleman, I have not been around seven Super Bowls. I'm afraid I don't know what a winning locker room smells like, nor have I ever tasted one either. So go ahead and take the following commentary with a grain of salt.

But you know what I have smelled before? Teams over-drafting quarterbacks. And we'll talk about that in just a moment -- but before we do! I have to say this narrative is pretty frustrating. I actually like a great deal of what the Giants were able to do with their draft capital this year. I was a fan of Dexter Lawrence. I was a fan of Deandre Baker. Same for Julian Love and Corey Ballentine.

Let's take a look at this full Giants draft class:

1.06 - QB Daniel Jones, Duke

1.17 - DL Dexter Lawrence, Clemson

1.30 - CB Deandre Baker, Georgia

3.71 - DE Oshane Ximines, Old Dominion

4.108 - CB Julian Love, Notre Dame

5.143 - LB Ryan Connelly, Wisconsin

5.171 - WR Darius Slayton, Auburn

6.180 - CB Corey Ballentine, Washburn

7.232 - OT George Asafo-Adjei, Kentucky

7.245 - DL Chris Slayton, Syracuse

You smell that? That smells like victory, New York. Let's break this thing all the way down.

Best Pick: CB Deandre Baker, Georgia

Baker was a bit of a surprise selection here, considering he wasn't expected to be the top cornerback off the board in the 2019 NFL Draft. And while I did favor Washington's Byron Murphy to Baker (Murphy when 33rd to Arizona), I like Baker in New York and I like the value the Giants were able to allocate here with bonus first round pick. Of course, the trade value has to be considered -- the Giants gave Seattle 132 and 142 to move up from 37 and draft Baker in the first round.

But the team came away with 10 players in this class anyway, so the extra picks weren't missed. Baker's level of play at Georgia should inspire confidence for Giants fans, particularly in a division where an arms race is well underway with Washington's overhaul of the passing game, Dallas' revitalized arial attack (thanks to Amari Cooper) and the Eagles' high flying offense.

The Giants didn't rest on their laurels and assume Sam Beal (a 2018 supplemental draft pick) would hold down the spot opposite Janoris Jenkins. I appreciate the mentality, I appreciate the trade up and I appreciate the value of the player.

Worst Pick: QB Daniel Jones, Duke

THIS. AIN'T. IT. I'm sorry, New York. The mental gymnastics we're putting ourselves through to justify the 4th best quarterback in the 2019 NFL Draft getting drafted with the 6th overall pick when he almost certainly could have been had at 17 (or 30) is outrageous.

bUt WhAt If hE gOt DRaFteD BeFoRe sEveNtEEn, kYle?

GOOD! Let someone else jump on that grenade and move on with your life. I don't understand how the Giants can draft Saquon Barkley with the 2nd overall selection and get defensive about criticism by citing he was the best player available...and then 12 months later draft Daniel Jones at 6 and get defensive about criticism by citing that he filled the need and he wouldn't have been there with their next pick.

Are you drafting for talent or are you drafting for needs? I get quarterbacks are a different animal, I promise I do. But the Giants got the 5th best quarterback to change hands last weekend (Murray - Arizona, Lock - Denver, Haskins - Washington, Rosen - Miami) and the cost of doing business ranged from the 15th pick to the 62nd pick.

And the Giants conducted their business at quarterback with the 6th pick.

Favorite Day 3 Pick: CB Julian Love, Notre Dame

The pick of Baker is one that I like, but I think the Giants' best value of this entire class falls at the feet of Julian Love. Love is a productive corner who (like Baker) won't shine in off-man coverage, but he will beat the tar out of you at the line of scrimmage. I'd assume functional athleticism was a key area of concern for Love, seeing as how he tumbled out of the top three rounds. But here? At 108? The value is a no brainer.

We've already briefly discussed the merits of attacking the defensive backfield in the NFC East, doubling down on a physical corner like Love protects the Giants from depth issues. You can never have too many cornerbacks.

Overall Grade: C+

I like a lot of the players the Giants added. The team got good value for several selections vs. my own personal assessments -- including Baker, Love, Ryan Connelly, Darius Slayton and Corey Ballentine. But it's the thought process (and opportunity cost) that hurts their draft grade in my eye. The combo of Daniel Jones and Dexter Lawrence could have easily been Josh Allen and Daniel Jones (or a better quarterback) -- a strategy that would have greatly helped them address their needs while also targeting best players available.

I like Dexter Lawrence. Did we really need to go that route here in New York, though? With Dalvin Tomlinson in house and another stout defender like B.J. Hill in house already, would Montez Sweat have made more sense? I think the Giants added talent but their decision making at the top of this year's draft has me thinking about how much better this class could have been with a few different decisions.

Written By:

Kyle Crabbs

Director of Scouting

Kyle Crabbs is the Director of Scouting for The Draft Network. Prior to his time with TDN, Kyle worked for seven years as the founder of his own third-party scouting service, NDT Scouting. Providing media coverage and also consultation services for agencies, Crabbs penned an annual NFL Draft Prospectus featuring 300+ player profiles on an annual basis from 2014-2020. Crabbs is currently the co-host of the Draft Dudes podcast with fellow TDN scout Joe Marino and helps coordinate TDN's national scouting effort.