Team Giants


Special Report

Sent: 02-23-17

Dave Klein was the Giants' beat writer for The Star-Ledger from 1961 to 1995.
He is the author of 26 books and he is one of only three sportswriters to have covered all the Super Bowls. Dave has allowed TEAM GIANTS to reprint some of his articles.


By Dave Klein
Assuming for a moment that quarterback isn't the Giants' most dire need for the 2017 offense - although one missed block could turn Eli Manning into a bench casualty - where would you rank the other positions?

We offer three choices - personal opinions rather than misleading, cloudy responses from the team's scouting staff, and perhaps the hoped-for logic will come through.

For instance, an offensive tackle who can play the left side. Wouldn't that be nice? Well, in the first round, where the Giants will have the 23rd overall selection - one might find Ryan Ramczyk, 6-3 and 215 from Wisconsin; Cam Robinson, 6-6 and 310 from Alabama; and Garrett Bolles, 6-5 and 295 from Utah.

Most of the way-to-early mock drafters have anointed Ramczyk as the first pick of that threesome, but others who speak without fear of identification suggest that Bolles might be the smart money selection.

Did you vote for a tight end? Well, first of all, unless his name is Gronkowski, one doesn't normally take a tight and in the first round, but if one did that anyway the two best choices appear to be O.J. Howard of Alabama and David Njoku of Miami (Fla.). Howard is the choice here at 6-5 and 250, and because of the position he plays there is a chance he'll still be there at 23. Not likely, but a chance. Njoku is more likely. He's 6-4 and 240 and runs the 40-yard dash in 4.53.

Some say the first pick should be a running back, what with the release of Rashad Jennings and the serious non-performance of the rest. Well, rookie Paul Perkins looked good enough to steal time from Jennings, but was that because of his performance or Jennings' lack of performance?

We have identified for you three running backs for your first-round consideration, and you should be reasonably familiar with one of them - Christian McCaffrey of Stanford. His father, Ed, was the team's third-round pick in 1991, also out of Stanford, and played through the 1993 season, when he was mysteriously released by then head coach Dan Reeves.

He picked up his career with the Denver Broncos and played through 1993, spent a year in San Francisco and from 1995 through 2003 with Denver. He has two Super Bowl rings - one with the Niners, one with the Broncos.

The other two are 5-11, 200-pound Dalvin Cook of Florida State and 6-1, 230-pound Leonard Fournette of LSU. McCaffrey, who finished third in the most recent Heisman Trophy voting, is 6-0 and 200. All will go in the first round, probably before the 23rd selection is made.

You have probably been told that this is not a good year for quarterbacks, and that can be interpreted two ways - this isn't a good year for quarterbacks or the Giants might find a gem at 23. But if the former is true, than those deemed possibilities might be gone long before Jerry Reese and his band of bean-counters gets to make a pick.

For the rest, and without endorsement, the three who have a first-round chance are Mitch Trubisky of North Carolina, DeShone Kizer of Notre Dame and Deshawn Watson of Clemson.

But it would be well to remember that first-round rookie quarterbacks almost never turn into starters, with apologies to the latest such wunderkind, Philadelphia's Carson Wentz of the Eagles.

EXTRA POINTS - The latest on recently released wide receiver Victor Cruz is that he will not have the chance to re-sign with the Giants because he has already had tryouts with Carolina and Jacksonville and the Denver Broncos have issued favorable statements concerning a tryout for him.

The Jacksonville option appears favorable, since the man in charge - Director of Football Operations, is Tom Coughlin, who was the Giants' head coach during the entire Cruz excitement.

Check out Dave's website at E-GIANTS where you can subscribe to his newsletters which run much more frequently than what is available here.
- Team Giants

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