The Giants stayed active in the trade market on day two of the 2021 NFL Draft. They traded down from 42 to 50 with the Dolphins to pick up an extra 2022 third-round selection and selected Georgia EDGE Azeez Ojulari at 50. They also traded up five spots in the third round from 76 to 71 to choose versatile defensive back Aaron Robinson out of UCF.
The interior offensive line may still be a problem, depending on how one views the skill-set of the presumptive starting guards Will Hernandez and Shane Lemieux. I, for one, really want competition and depth to be added to the guard position--that has yet to happen. Wyatt Davis, Ben Cleveland, and Quinn Meinerz were selected in the third round, and the talent at IOL is thinning a bit, albeit there’s some talent still on the board. Who might be on tap for Day 3? Let's take a look.
OG Trey Smith, Tennessee
Smith was a coveted five-star prospect who elected to go to Tennessee over so many other more reputable programs back in the 2017 recruiting cycle. He has played some tackle but is undoubtedly more comfortable at guard due to his lack of foot speed outside. Smith possesses power and strength, and his hands carry a ton of violence and pop, and he does a good job dictating the point of attack when his hands land.
Watching Smith fit his hands inside and latch onto defenders and drive his lower body through their bodies is a sight to see. Had issues with health (had serious blood clot issues), and this must be vetted. I also saw a lot of balance issues with Smith; he found himself on the ground a bit too often for my liking. Tended to fail with sustaining blocks through counters, needs to move his feet more. He’s an ideal fit for a power-gap system. Some projected Smith for round two, but I think he's a better fit for round four.
OG David Moore, Grambling
I like what I saw from David Moore at the Reese’s Senior Bowl. He’s only played two years of football in high school, so he’s raw. Had really strong hands that had good grip strength at the point of attack. I love seeing small school guys dominate Power-5 players. He’s thick and light on his feet; he does a good job limiting space and getting his hands inside to pull defenders close. He also shows good reactive quickness to refute counter moves.
As a run defender, he gets low and explodes through his hips to drive defenders off the ball. He’s not exactly refined as of now, and his feet aren’t always calm. But he'd be a solid addition on day three of the draft. Kudos to the Reese’s Senior Bowl for finding talented small-school guys.
OT/OG Royce Newman, Ole Miss
This pick may be more of a later addition (around six). He drives his feet through targets and finishes with excellent competitive toughness when he can drive block down the line of scrimmage to wash. I wish his hands were a bit stronger at the point of attack, yet he relies on superior positioning to win.
Showed a solid ability to kick and pull into space. He gets caught lunging at times and should attempt to refrain from racing. He uses his frame well to seal the edge as a tackle. This would be important for the Giants who love to pull their guards. Ensures the has a superior position before he closes width when sealing the edge.
He doesn’t have the quickest feet in pass protection. His sets aren’t bad - utilizes good angles - but he may need to overcompensate against speed. His anchor is good, and he does a solid job resetting his hips to unlock extra power to hold or drive, despite his higher center of gravity.
Newman is an adequate run blocker who may lack the length and upper body strength to play tackle in the NFL. However, he has experience at guard (is very versatile) and looked good at the position during the Reese’s Senior Bowl. He understands how to leverage angles, and his lower body strength is solid. He will be a developmental swing lineman whose upside is capped unless his hand pop/usage improves.
DT Marvin Wilson, Florida State
Sometimes, Dave Gettleman just can’t help himself - a player like Wilson may result in that reaction from a general manager like Gettleman. Wilson was a consensus five-star recruit who was being discussed as a potential top ten pick last off-season until he had an uninspiring 2020.
He’s a quick stout defensive lineman with powerful hands who can shoot gaps well. He didn’t test up to his play speed, and, like many of the Florida State players, he never fully lived up to his potential, but players with high pedigree coming out of high school tend to attract more NFL eyes. I wouldn’t be shocked if the Giants took a flyer on a player like Wilson at some point in the draft with the expiring contracts of B.J. Hill, R.J. McIntosh, Austin Johnson, and Danny Shelton.
EDGE Janiarous Robinson, Florida State
Robinson is another defender who has untapped potential. The 6'5", 264-pounder generates solid power through his lower half as a bull-rusher and has raw strength that he just needs to turn into functional strength. He flashes counter moves with an inside spin, but the technique is sloppy and not exactly fluid. He plays with a ton of effort--competitive toughness is not an issue.
He doesn’t have much of a plan when pass-rushing, and he could use his length more in this area. I would like to see him string moves together and use most of his physical gifts. I didn’t see much of that on his tape, nor at the Senior Bowl. There’s room to grow for Robinson from a technical standpoint.
Robinson is raw; there’s no doubting that, yet he has untapped potential and needs development, but the athletic traits aren’t too impressive. He’ll be drafted on Day 3 because of his incredible measurables and some of the raw power that he does possess. Coaching staffs will attempt to correct the deficiencies in his game--this type of size cannot be taught.
EDGE Jordan Smith, UAB
Jordan Smith has incredible length. He’s slightly under 6’6, with 33⅝” arms. He took part in the Senior Bowl guy, and his pro-day testing was uninspiring, leading to his slide. Smith, to me, projects as a six-rounder who can add depth at the EDGE.
His athletic ability is good on tape, but his lack of anchor and strength could limit him early.
EDGE Elerson Smith, Northern Iowa
I know, a fourth EDGE? Smith is a unique athlete who checks all the length/athletic ability traits that the Giants, and the NFL, tend to love.
Smith didn’t have the opportunity to play in 2020 due to COVID-19 and Northern Iowa being an FCS program, but he made up for it in 2021 at the Reese’s Senior Bowl. Smith was versatile and was easily defeating Power-5 players on offense. He did a great job getting horizontal, or skinny, through interior gaps in team drills while showing bend through contact and a more refined pass rush plan than I had originally anticipated. He is a great upside pick on day three of the draft.