By Michael Stewart/@golferbad
Introduction: As teams are preparing for the draft with only a day remaining, it repeats mentioning that this will be the most important draft for GM Dave Gettleman and the Giants as it could shape the Giants future for years to come. The overall depth of this year’s prospects will not only transcend into Day 3, but also in the UDFA (undrafted free agent pool) class. GM Dave Gettleman has been known to find those diamonds in the rough during the UDFA process in the past. The year, Gettleman has a great opportunity to really solidify the Giants depth/talent on the roster and I expect him to load up during the UDFA signings. Below I have my top projected UDFA at each position.
- Quarterback: Ryan Willis (Virginia Tech) 6’4/225: Rangy versatile quarterback able to throw effectively in the pocket or on the run.
- Running Back: Reggie Corbin (Illnois) 5’9/200: Very explosive all purpose back who reminds many of Darren Spoles.
- Fullback: Nick Ralston (Louisiana-Lafayette) 6’1/240: Explosive blocker who lined up as a traditional FB and Hybrid in college. Also has reliable hands in the flats and/or screens.
- Tight End: Rashod Berry (Ohio State) 6’4/265: Played DE early in his career before transitioning over to TE. Not a stat machine, but will give up all he has; which is reliable hands and solid blocking.
- Wide Receiver: Ahmad Wagner (Kentucky) 6’5/240: Big, strong and not afraid to play physical. Catches the ball well in traffic and should be a red zone threat.
- Center: Cohl Cabral (Arizona State) 6’5/295: Undersized weight wise, but has a big frame to add muscle at the next level. Technically sound with his footwork and hand placement.
- Guard: Donell Stanley (South Caroline) 6’3/322: Massive lineman with a powerful lower body. Better as run blocker than pass protector.
- Tackle: Gewhite Stallworth (Louisiana Tech) 6’8/320: Needs a lot of technique work, but has the long frame and arm length to add muscle to his 6’8 frame. Stallworth is a project that would be worth the investment.
- Defensive Tackle: Calvin Taylor (Kentucky) 6’8/310: Taylor played along the defensive line and could do the same in the NFL. Could easily add another 20-30 pounds to his frame without a hitch.
- Defensive End/Edge: Chauney Rivers (Mississippi State) 6’3/270: Rivers has shown flashes of a playmaker, but needs to be more consistent. Has the body to play at the next level, needs to improve his technique more.
- Outside Linebacker: Jesse Lemonier (Liberty) 6’3/240: Very explosive off the edge utilizing his speed and leverage. Plays with a very high motor.
- Inside Linebacker: LaDarius Hamilton (North Texas) 6’3/255: Played DE in college, but many scouts like him as an ILB at the next level. Hamilton has great instincts and plays extremely physical.
- Cornerback: DeMarkus Acy (Missouri) 6’1/195: Ball hawking skill set with the ability to play it physical. Equally effective against the pass and the run.
- Free Safety: Nigel Warrior (Tennessee) 6’0/190: Centerfielder mentality who can also defend the run. Lacks the high end speed, but utilizes that with solid positioning and anticipation.
- Strong Safety: Javin White (UNLV) 6’2/195: In your face safety who will often play in the box as an extra linebacker in many packages.
Final Thoughts: I would expect the Giants and Dave Gettleman to sign at least 8-10 UDFA and hope to find a diamond in the rough. Who knows, maybe Gettlman could find the next Andrew Norwell or a Victor Cruz this year. The rosters have been expanded this year (53 to 55) as well as the practice squad (10 to 12). Either way; there will be talent available, and hopefully GM Dave Gettleman pushes the right buttons and brings in players who could make a difference.