Another day, another mock draft. This one comes from Touchdown Wire’s Mark Schofield.
Calling it his “draft of integrity,” meaning he picks players he believes the teams will select, not based on who they might need, Schofield mocks Alabama wide receiver DeVonta Smith to the New York Giants at No. 15 overall.
Wait, don’t the Giants have the No. 11 pick, though?
Yes, they do. In this scenario, they trade back to No. 15 with the New England Patriots. In addition, the Giants receive the Pats’ 2022 first-round selection.
New York Giants general manager Dave Gettleman said recently that he has often tried to trade back in drafts, but never found a willing partner. With Trey Lance still available, he finds a willing partner in Bill Belichick. The New England Patriots pay a bit of a “quarterback premium” here but having solidified a lot of needs via their free agency spending spree, they can be aggressive and target a quarterback early in the draft. With Cam Newton returning the Patriots can be patient with Lance, and bring him along at the right pace.
This would be a first for Dave Gettleman and the Giants, who don’t normally trade back in the draft order. It seems like New England gets off easy here. They just landed a possible franchise quarterback by moving up four spots and giving up just one other pick — a likely late first rounder that they probably would have traded away for more picks anyway.
The Giants still get one of their coveted targets in Smith, the Heisman Trophy winner that will help their offense immensely from Day 1.
Sure the New York Giants added Kenny Golladay this off-season, but this is after all a copycat league. Everyone saw what Stefon Diggs was able to do for Josh Allen last season, and with every Giants fan hoping to see a similar year three leap from Daniel Jones, adding a silky-smooth route runner would be a wise investment.
Of course, this might be betting on an outliner. After all, DeVonta Smith’s size does not fit the traditional profile of a top-flight NFL wideout. Yet watch him separate on a consistent basis, beat press alignments with technique and footwork, and play much stronger than 166 pounds and you too will be convinced.
Yes, Smith’s size is concerning but his production is eye-popping. The Giants will direct him to the weight room to thicken him up and hope that he can maintain his speed and elusiveness at 185 pounds.
If they hit on Smith, they would have a nice wide receiver group of Golladay, Sterling Shepard, Darius Slayton, Dante Pettis and Smith. With star running back Saquon Barkley coming back, tight end Evan Engram returning for a fifth season and Kyle Rudolph coming in as the traditional, in-line tight end, Daniel Jones has to be be better in 2021.
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