For a second year in a row, the New York Giants were busy on the free agent market but still need to use the 2017 NFL Draft to fill a few team needs.
The New York Giants made some important free agency moves which include signing Brandon Marshall and inking Jason Pierre-Paul to a long-term deal. These moves helped sure up some areas that could’ve been considered team needs.
They still have their foot in the free agency market with Johnathan Hankins still on the market. New York is reportedly still in the mix to bring last year’s starting defensive tackle back into the fold.
Things appear to be trending towards Hankins returning which is why I left defensive tackle off this list. However, if he does sign elsewhere defensive tackle would jump into the top three team needs.
Below are the New York Giants top three team needs as we head towards the 2017 NFL Draft.
No. 1- Left Tackle
Heading into the 2015 NFL Draft, Ereck Flowers was seen as more of a right tackle who struggled working in space. The Giants felt differently and drafted him with the hopes he would develop into their long-term answer at left tackle.
Flowers has been a liability in pass protection since he has arrived in New York. He just doesn’t have the quickness or foot speed to keep pressure off Eli Manning. The pressure he allows has had a major impact on the offense’s timing.
This year’s draft is light on left tackle prospects with Utah’s Garett Bolles and Wisconsin’s Ryan Ramczyk the top two options. It’s possible that both prospects are off the board when the Giants pick in the 1st round.
The need at this position is so great that I wouldn’t rule out the Giants making a trade to move up the draft.
No. 2- Running Back
The top of the Giants running back depth chart features Paul Perkins and Shane Vereen. Neither player has the chops to be considered an every-down back. New York must find a more physical runner capable of carrying the load.
Luckily, this draft features a ton of running back talent. The Giants could find a highly effective starter in the second round. Toledo’s Kareem Hunt would be a nice fit and also provide some help as a pass catcher.
No. 3- Tight End
Will Tye is a solid contributor but does little to threat the defense in the passing game. Eli Manning has always made great use of his tight ends, but hasn’t had an elite talent at the position since Jeremy Shockey.
The 2017 NFL Draft has some high-level tight end prospects that could solve this problem. An explosive pass-catcher like Ole Miss’ Evan Engram would be a great 2nd round pick.