While Major League Baseball season is in full swing (ha ha), the National Football League will again take center stage later this week. That’s because the annual NFL Draft, or what used to be called the Player Selection Meeting, will kickoff (ha ha) Thursday evening in Nashville, Tennessee. Round one will be completed Thursday night, rounds two and three will be done Friday night, followed by rounds four through seven Saturday afternoon/evening.
The New York Football Giants figure to be very busy over the three day period in Music City. They will be heard from early (#6 and #17), and often (they own the most picks in the draft – 12). Good news for a team lacking more than a few talented players on both sides of the ball. So what is “the plan” GM Dave Gettleman claims to have? He passed on a quarterback at #2 last season, surely he will pull the trigger on a trigger-man in round one this year, right? Don’t be so sure, at least at #6, and I am right with him. This draft is said to be loaded with impact defensive players, something his team does not have nearly enough of.
Did you know that the Jints finished second to last in the league in sacks last season with 30? James Bettcher’s defensive unit struggled so mightily in this department that they could have used GPS to find their way to opposing team’s quarterbacks. Only the Oakland Raiders (13), who traded away the great Khalil Mack, had less sacks then Big Blue.
Sift through some 2018 NFL team defensive statistics, and you will find that Bettcher and Pat Shurmur’s D ranked in the mid-20’s league wide in the following categories: passing yards allowed, rushing yards allowed, total yards allowed, points per game, and total points. There are more categories/metrics in which their failure is further highlighted, but I don’t want to get too far into the weeds. So, can you see where I am heading here?
If I, John Joseph McAleavey Jr. were sitting in Gettleman’s seat Thursday night, the card I would send to NFL Commissioner, Roger Goodell would say:
“With the 6th pick in the 2019 NFL Draft, the New York Giants select… the best DEFENSIVE player (remaining on our board at this point)”!
Photo: The Boston Globe
That’s right, it would not say Dwayne Haskins, Drew Lock, Daniel Jones, or Will Grier. I agree with Gettleman in that I would not force a pick just because of need. Do the Giants “need” a good, young quarterback in the worst way, YES! For me though, #6 is too high to choose any one of the aforementioned QB’s. By any and practically every “expert’s” ranking of the best players eligible to be drafted, defensive players dominate the top 10 of their lists. By now you know some of the names: Quinnen Williams, Nick Bosa, Josh Allen, Devin White, Ed Oliver, Rashan Gary, Montez Sweat, etc.
Photo: Elite Sports NY
Judging by most mock drafts and scuttlebutt leaking out, Kyler Murray seems to be the consensus #1 overall selection by the Arizona Cardinals. Should some quarterback-less (desperate – lol) team want to trade up into the top five for a signal caller (perhaps the Washington Redskins, Miami Dolphins or Denver Broncos) so be it, that just means there will be one more highly rated Hog Mollie for me to choose from.
Here’s hoping that Dave Gettleman sticks to his guns. Find the best defensive game wrecker available at #6, and pick him! Assure yourself one of the top players in the entire draft. Then see how things are progressing, there is always the opportunity to move up for a quarterback, or remain at #17 should one nosedive.
That to me seems like a sound strategy. What say you?
Feature Photo: Elite Sports NY