Outside the Giants’ practice facility, quarterback Eli Manning was vehemently denying any involvement in a recent memorabilia scandal despite being flooded with questions.
A few minutes later on the inside of the facility, Giants’ general manager Jerry Reese ironically spoke about the possibilities of the team drafting a quarterback as well as other needs in his annual pre-draft conference in wake of the event next Thursday evening April 27 in Philadelphia.
Reese, whose team has the 23rd pick overall in the opening round, didn’t tip his hand at the possibilities, but he continued to reiterate theta the team would “take the best player available.” He stated the Giants have 32 possible choices targeted in their “first row,” as the team has seven overall picks.
Along with the 36-year-old Manning, the G-Men will bring veterans Josh Johnson and Geno Smith into camp. Drafting a quarterback in the lower rounds is a possibility, but the team likely would lean toward drafting an offense lineman or linebacker, both areas that continue to be defined. Yet, Reese hinted the team could trade-up in the draft
“Geno will get a fair share to compete like everyone else and we are excited to have him,” Reese said. “You just take the best player available however he fits on your roster. You can take a quarterback high, you can take him in the seventh round, wherever you take him you hope everything falls right for them and if they have to play you hope it’s the time for them to play. I probably have looked at more quarterbacks this year than in previous years. You just never know. We think Eli (Manning) has some good years left.”
“It costs to move up, though,” added Reese. “If you’re going to move up, you’re going to give away a lot of draft picks to move up, even if you just move up a couple of spots. We like taking our picks.”
Reese briefly addressed the offensive line issue, but he wouldn’t elaborate on the status of left tackle Ereck Flowers and the newly signed D. J. Fluker, who could play either guard or tackle. Instead, he stated the decision would be left to head coach Ben McAdoo and his staff.
“D.J.’s going to come in and battle for a position just like everybody else,” Reese said. “Hopefully a change of address and a new scene for him will re-energize him. I know he wants to prove that he’s still a number one-type talent. He has the versatility to play both positions.
“There’s a long time before we play. In the spring, we’ll experiment on different lineups and situations with our offensive line. We’ll tinker with a lot of things in the spring.”
Whether or not the team uses their top pick on an offensive lineman, Reese will work to further solidify his team toward the next step in the postseason.
“We can use help on the offensive line, but we can use help at every position. We just want to create competition going into training camp. We are going to try and upgrade at every position.”