As the 2017 NFL Draft rapidly approaches, the New York Giants will have one focus in mind – to inject some speed and power into their suddenly disjointed offense. They usually select the beast player available on their board, especially in the first round, but with the window on QB Eli Manning closing, they might select players that can get them to the Super Bowl this season.
That won’t be easy since the strength of this draft lies mainly on the defensive side of the ball. What most fans and pundits are hoping is that the Giants select offensive linemen, offensive tackles to be exact, early on in the draft. That’s another problem because the talent level just isn’t there.
Here are my five draft day wish list for the Giants this year. If they can get one of these players, most Giant fans would be pleased.
- J. Howard, TE Alabama. The Giants would have to trade up from No. 23 to get him but by all accounts he could be worth it. Big Blue has been anything but big the past few seasons and 6’6”, 250-lb Howard would give them the big target they have so desperately been missing, especially in the red zone. With Howard to split the seam and a WR corps that consists of Odell Beckham, Jr, Brandon Marshall and Sterling Shepard, the offense would be wide open again. Doubtful they’ll be able to pull this off, but we can wish.
- Dalvin Cook, RB Florida State. Could be the breakaway home-run hitter they need out of the backfield. Cook has some downside, however. He has issues with ball security and a spotty off-field history. If the Giants choose to see past those, and I’m not saying they will, they could strike gold should Cook fall to them. Unlike Paul Perkins, Cook can play all three downs and give the Giants a formidable running attack again. They may not get a shot at him, as his stock appears to be rising.
- Christian McCaffrey, RB Stanford. The son of former Giant WR Ed McCaffrey is an all-purpose, highly productive playmaker that can give the Giants versatility on both offense and special teams. He has been compared to Tiki Barber for his ability to gain yards from anywhere on the field and any formation he sets up in. Some do not believe he will be able to take his game effectively to the pro level, but others are certain that he can. Either way, the Giants will be a better offense with McCaffrey in it.
- David Njoku, TE Miami. Njoku comes form a long line of Miami TEs that have been earmarked for NFL success. He is seen as an ascending player, strong and productive and can give the Giants a boost in the red zone. If Howard is out of reach, Njoku would be the next best thing. The New Jersey product has been on the Giants’ radar and there’s no question they are high on him.
- Ryan Ramczck, OT Wisconsin. The biggest need on the Giants’ offseason board is offensive tackle and Ramczyk appears to be the top one in the draft. He was monster in the Big 10, holding his own against top talent and there’s no reason think he won’t take that success to the next level. Ramczyk is also a draft riser, and with the talent pool so shallow at the position in this draft, I don’t expect him to be around at No. 23.