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Saturday, April 25, 2009

Recap of Day 1 of the NFL Draft


William Beatty, Clint Sintim and Hakeem Nicks

Quick summary: We did not get Braylon Edwards, so that was disappointing. It always takes years to grade picks, but with that said, the early word is that Nicks and Sintim were uninspiring picks while Beatty was a great pick at 60 for us. That does not mean that Nicks and Sintim will not work and that Beatty will be a star. It just means that we were disappointed we did not take Rey Maualuga at #29.

We'll pose a question to everyone- would you trade Nicks and a ~4th rounder for All Pro Braylon Edwards? Of course you would. And that is why this draft thus far is less than inspiring. Let's talk about the good things about Hakeem Nicks first. He has good hands. He did not drop a single ball in passing drills during his workout for the Giants. So considering that Edwards dropped the ball a league-leading 12 times, you can spin this positively and say the Giants want the hands. Nicks is the player who made the circus catch where he pulls the ball out from behind his back. So let's hope those hands do it for the Giants.

Wonder was disappointed that Britt was not chosen. There were many of us (myself included) who did not want to DRAFT a WR (NICKS OR BRITT) THIS HIGH at all, but more on that subject below. Britt is taller and faster, jumps higher, so Wonder wants the upside, the potential. You cannot teach size and speed. Nicks is currently a better player than Britt. But everyone needs to improve a great deal for the Pro Level, and Wonder is thinking not only where you are but where you can ascend to in coming years. 3 years. The # for WRs developmentally. Tennessee followed up with the 30th pick, and took.. Britt. So these two will be watched side by side for a while to see who turned out better.

Next is Clint Sintim, taken 45th. Where does he play, asks Wonder (who liked him in general, but rated him as a 3rd rounder). If you wanted MLB, why not take Maualuga? Sintim is not quick or fast enough to be taken at this 45 spot. Not fast enough for OLB. Best as an inside LB in a 3-4, the tackler guy, not the cover guy. So where does he go, asks Wonder. One hope... the guy can hit and the guy can tackle. Groom him to play MLB. But certainly not able to play the Mike on 3rd down. I asked Marvelous about Sintim, and he has a much more favorable review... "He's a keeper, he'll be a starter down the road. I saw him play two games this season. He is a quick guy for his size. Wraps up guys well, aggressive. When he gets to a guy he is not going to let the offensive player break the tackle." Wonder's response was disagreement on the issue of his speed. "NOT FAST ENOUGH."

A nice uptick to leave the first day with- the reviews on William Beatty. Wonder had the guy rated 24th overall in the draft, so that should tell you something. "He is good and solid in every aspect of his game. Agile. Long arms. He needs some muscle, but that is what the weight room is for. Get some muscle. He has the body to fill out and add 25-30 lbs. (currently 6'6" 307 lbs.) He needs to hold his own on the bull rush, but that is precisely why he has ~two years behind Diehl/McKenzie to step into that role."

I have a fondness for second round Offensive Linemen... makes me think of Pro Bowlers like Chris Snee and Jumbo Elliot. The game is won and lost on the line of scrimmage, so this pick was inspiring. After all, we are not getting the ball to Nicks in three or four years from now (when McKenzie is out of football) IF we cannot keep the QB upright. Wonder thinks that Diehl could move back to the right side and let Beatty play LT. Marc Ross (Director of Scouting) says: "Natural LT."

Why not take Maualuga as the #1 LBer? Why take a WR at all? Why did Maualuga drop? Wonder believes it was because people do not see him as a 3 down LBer. They question his ability to cover. The reply is that you are not going to ask this guy to cover the TE in the seam, so he'll be fine. He went SEVEN PICKS BEFORE SINTIM! Are you going to tell me that Maualuga and Sintim are essentially rated the same and both are going to have similar careers? The Packers fronted us at 26, traded up to grab Matthews, and that was the end. Instead of taking a LBer #1, we took a WR instead and then had thin pickings at 45. My sense is that we were outplayed on the LBer pick, with Matthews going 3 spots in front of us in Round 1 and Maualuga going 7 spots in front of us in Round 2. This can happen to you when you are trying to look for a player to fall to you. Beatty fell to us, NO QUESTION ABOUT THAT. A good LBer did not.

Ross made some interesting remarks about the weight gain (14 lbs.) by Nicks. He hurt his hamstring, could not work out and the Giants scouts/front office took him at his word. "We thought his (pro) style would easily transfer to our level."

Reese on Nicks: Young kid, only 20 years old. Big strong body, Anquan body type. Reese said he had 4 players they were ready to take at #29 and would have been happy with any of them. They did not come close to trading up OR down.

FINAL RECAP:
1) Edwards was two birds in the hand vs one WR currently in the bush.
2) I do not believe in taking WRs in the first round of the draft, so I am biased, be it Nicks, Britt, whoever.
3) Our problems with LBer have always been lack of speed. Boley has speed, but the quick take on Sintim is that he does not offer that.
4) Beatty has the potential to be a cornerstone of the OL for many years. It is refreshing to see the organization commit resources to this unit in a significant way for the first time in 4 years.

5 comments:

Andrew Nisinson said...

I think Nicks is a way better choice than Britt. You can't teach size and speed... but you can't teach instincts and you can't teach great hands... you can teach a receiver to have good hands, but Nicks shows an amazing ability to go get the ball. Also, Nicks is quite fast, and in terms of football speed, he's faster than Britt. If we want a big body to train up, then we don't need to take that guy in the first round. We should just take Patrick Turner (USC) in round 5 (probably). He's about 6'5" and is very physical. His hands aren't perfect, although this last year he didn't have that many drops. He does NOT have great speed. He could probably get faster because even though he has a big frame, he could still fill out a bit. If he works hard, he could be a great red zone receiver, just a big target to go up and get the ball. In terms of Nicks, he is the second most NFL ready receiver in the draft (second to Crabtree) AND the second most talented receiver in the draft (second to Harvin). He might be only about 6'1" (3/4"), but he's got a big frame, long arms and he PLAYS BIG. He reminds me of a smaller quicker version of Saints WR Marques Colston. Also, I am very excited to see how the WR's we have pan out. We have a lot of young talent right now, guys will be vying for spots. Every guy in there is a great athlete and has drive.

For tomorrow I wanna see us take two defensive backs, a running back and another WR (Turner).

Norm said...

I don't think the Browns' asking price had anything to do with the Giants failure to land Edwards. Rather, I believe the issue was Edwards' asking price for Edwards.

My belief is that the Giants and Browns had an agreement in place for a 2,4 and 2010 conditional. But it was contingent on Reese signing Braylon to a contract extension beforehand. Otherwise you risk spending a high value pick for a one year rental.

But Edwards has publicly stated that he want 10 million a year. Maybe he comes down to nine. And I can't see Reese going much higher than seven. That's a pretty big gap to bridge, especially if you're negotiating within a limited time window. Not surprisingly, the deal didn't get done.

Obviously, Reese and Coughlin were not comfortable going into 2009 with the receiving corps they finished the year with. I think Edwards was Plan A. But that didn't work out. So you go to Plan B, which is Best WR available at 29. Came down to Britt or Nicks. I had 'em rated pretty even, but I think Nicks' superior hands gave him the edge in the eyes of the Giant front office. I imagine they still have nightmares about windy New Jersey games in December and want someone who can be relied upon to haul in a ball fluttering in the wind. Nicks seems like a better bet on that score, hence the pick.

Makes sense to me. Maybe it's not "inspiring" but it's a good, fundamentally sound selection in the Giants' biggest area of need.

Andy F. said...

Q&A with Jerry Reese:

Q: Did you get your man?

A: We got a very good player; very good player. We like him a lot. He is a big, strong kid, very productive, strong body type that you like. A lot of production. He is a very young kid, I think he is only 20 years old. So we feel good about picking this guy at 29. A lot of production.

Q: You said the other day you didn’t have a glaring need at WR. You picked him. Why?

A: Well because we had a good grade on him and he was there at the right time. We didn’t reach for anybody. We feel good about where we picked him.

Ultimatenyg here: translated, we DID NOT GET OUR MAN. Their man was Edwards, Matthews or even someone else. Nicks was essentially the best available, and he may turn out to be a great pro, but he was NOT the man they wanted. When you get the person you are targeting, believe me, they will let you know. When Accorsi got Jacobs in the 4th round, he was doing cartwheels. This is how the draft works. On the other hand, Cedric Jones wasn't their man either.

Bob said...

Andy
I agree Edwards would have been a better alternative than Nicks. But
3 teams wanted Edwards,...us, the Eagles and Ten. Obviously nobody got him, meaning Cleveland was very unreasonable in their demands or the salary demand by Edwards scared them away. Clearly,not even a close to reasonable deal was not out there for Edwards.

Jerry Reese disappointed me yesterday. With ALL the late picks
that we will not be able to use, why the hell didn't he move up aggressively to get Maclin or/and
Malaluga ? I don't get it !
He was aggressive in free agency
and now he stands around and watches great talent slip away when he has lots of picks to deal with.

Lets hope he starts trading up early today to get some of the good talent still on the board.

BTW, I feel Nicks will work out fine(great hands), Beatty was a very good choice, and I don't know about Sintim, especially when we could/should have traded up for Malalaluga.

Andrew Nisinson said...

We didn't get our man because our man in the first round was supposed to be Darrius Heyward-Bey

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