Hello New York Giants Fans!
Happy Saturday and welcome to week 15 of the 2022 college football season. Of course, Championship Weekend was last week, and we only have one game on the schedule today, the annual Army-Navy game (CBS – 3 p.m.).
So instead of trying to follow Joe Schoen around the country or highlight interesting plays, I decided to give a draft simulation a shot. In fact, I decided to replay one of Ed’s questions for this week’s “5 Questions” with Bleeding Green Nation. This question was about the decisions the Giants have to make about Daniel Jones and Saquon Barkley – and who would pick Ed if the Giants can only sign one.
What the Giants do with Jones and Barkley will define their offseason strategy for 2023 and the years beyond.
I decided to write with each of these scenarios in mind.
In the first simulation, the Giants either sign Jones to a second contract or choose to roll with Tyrod Taylor and develop a mid-term quarterback. Either way, they’re using their best picks to try and improve the team throughout the draft.
In the second simulation, the Giants decided to let Jones seek his fortune elsewhere. Instead of signing Jones to a multi-year deal, the Giants are using their cap space to address their roster as a whole. Things like extending Andrew Thomas, Dexter Lawrence and Adoree Jackson, as well as re-signing Julian Love, Darius Slayton and Saquon Barkley (if he accepted a reasonable contract). I would also consider adding a player like JuJu Smith-Schuster or Allen Lazard to the reception hall.
Meanwhile, Joe Schoen and Brian Daboll will use the draft to get “Their Guy” at quarterback.
Let’s see how the two turned out.
Simulation 1 – No trade
Thoughts of Raptor
For this scenario, I have the Giants standing with their natural choice. I was hoping a top corner or receiver would fall on me in the first round, but no luck. So instead, I took Torrence, who recently declared for the draft. Torrence is, to put it plainly, an absolute unit. The 6-foot-5, 340-pound guard plays every inch and ounce of his size. He has power to spare and would form a formidable duo with Andrew Thomas or Evan Neal.
Michael Mayer is simply a no-brainer in 54th place overall – in fact, I almost didn’t pick him at all because his presence was probably just an artifact of some weird draft simulator. Mayer also recently declared for the draft, and he is a true “complete” tight end. Not only is he already a very good blocker, but he is also a dangerous and productive receiver.
Xavier Hutchinson is kind of a sleeper right now at wide receiver. He’s a good size at 6-foot-3, 210 pounds and is already a savvy road runner. He can free the line of scrimmage against man cover and pearl corners on the field with his size, speed or technique.
Finally, I helped the defense with Kyu Blu Kelly from Stanford. Kelly has the length and hip fluidity to play press man programs, as well as the route recognition to play zone covers. Perhaps more importantly, Kelly is able to compete against top-tier competitors, which should serve him well in the NFC East.
Simulation 2 – Negotiate
Thoughts of Raptor
For this scenario, I traded 23rd to 10th overall, sending the Atlanta Falcons the Giants’ first and third picks in 2023 (23rd and 86th picks overall), as well as their first and third round picks in 2024. I might have gotten away with less, but I wanted to make sure that I was able to secure the trade.
I ran 10 first-round simulations (computer only, no choice on my part) before doing this simulation to see how high I needed to jump to have a reasonable shot on one (or more) of the top quarterbacks. Will Levis was available at 10 in nine of the tries, while Anthony Richardson was available in three (he went ninth overall three more times). Neither Bryce Young nor CJ Stroud made it past six in any of the simulations. So after 10 runs, it looked like if I was going to shoot one of the top QB prospects, I would have to move up (at least) to the 10th overall pick.
I don’t know if I would have chosen Levis or Richardson if I had had the choice between the two. Levis is the more polished of the two and still brings some impressive physical traits, while Richardson is definitely a draft but also has the kind of physical traits we haven’t seen since Cam Newton walked out of Auburn.
One point that works in favor of Lévis is the presence of Wan’Dale Robinson on the Giants’ roster. Robinson played with Levis at Kentucky, and pairing young quarterbacks with skill position players they already have chemistry with has become a popular way to accelerate their development.
Elsewhere, I wanted to add an inside offensive lineman, cornerback or linebacker in the second and third rounds. However, the board just didn’t change in my favor this time around either.
So I continued to add weapons for the Giants offense. Dalton Kincaid is a big, athletic receiver who could partner Daniel Bellinger for a dangerous 12-person package. Kincaid needs development in the blocking aspect of the TE game, but his athletic advantage is huge and Mike Kafka knows how to turn an athletic tight end into a weapon.
AT Perry is a big receiver (6-foot-5, 215 pounds) who has a background in track and field and basketball as well as football. He has the speed to devour the open field as a deep threat, as well as the agility, football IQ and hands to work as a possession receiver. He may not be a “number one” receiver right away, but his tools would be highly valued on the Giants’ offense.