Senior Bowl Prospects That Could Be Fits for the Giants

Patricia Traina

This week the NFL community will assemble in Mobile, Alabama, site of the annual Senior Bowl, to check out some of the numerous collegiate prospects who could find their way onto draft boards this coming April.

The Giants, like every other team, try to meet with just about every prospect possible, making some of these earlier reports who met with who irrelevant. But there are certainly a few names from those players who accepted invitations to attend the event that bears watching.

Here are a few names of interest at positions where the Giants could likely use some additional depth.

C Nick Harris, 6-foot 1, 302 pounds | Washington. One of the most significant needs on this team is at center, and not just because incumbent Jon Halapio is working his way back from a torn ACL and is set to be a restricted free agent.

The Giants could potentially explore moving Kevin Zeitler to center, which would open up right guard for Nick Gates to play, or they could plug Gates in at right tackle and draft a center to step right into the lineup.

With Daniel Jones likely benefitting from a veteran offensive line, moving Zeitler to center would make the most sense, but at the same time, considering Harris, a solid technician and cerebral player who could be available Day 2, might be another option.

DT Javon Kinlaw, 6-foot 6, 310 pounds | South Carolina. Dave Gettleman loves his hog mollies, and Kinlaw, one of the most highly touted attendees at the Senior Bowl, would certainly fit that bill at 6-foot 6, 310 pounds.

Kinlaw plays with power and is versatile enough to fit any defensive front, which makes him an attractive candidate. Kinlaw grew up facing various hardships such as homelessness and hunger, but because of those, he’s wise beyond his years.

Although Kinlaw’s numbers aren’t eye-catching, the production on tape and his impact on the rest of the defense is hard not to notice on tape. The Giants have a solid core of defensive linemen, but they would no doubt like to build up the depth a little bit more.

Edge Terrell Lewis, 6-foot 5, 255 pounds | Alabama. Lewis is probably the most intriguing of the pass rushers in this game, and the Giants sure could use a solid pass rusher to complement youngsters Lorenzo Carter and Oshane Ximines, especially if they’re unable to re-sign Markus Golden.

Lewis missed the 2018 season with a torn ACL suffered in 2017. Last year, he came back strong, recording six sacks in 10 games to go along with 11.5 tackles for a loss and 31 tackles (21 solo). Lewis has the versatility to line up in a 2-point or 3-point stance, possesses good length and strong hands. Lewis also has a quick, explosive first step that takes opponents by surprise.

OT Prince Tega Wanogho, 6-foot 7, 305 pounds | Auburn. Originally intending to play basketball after migrating from his native Nigeria, Wanogho stumbled into football sort of by accident when he accompanied a friend to football practice and was given a chance to show what he could do by the coach, who put him at defensive end.

Fast forward to At 6-7 and 305 pounds, he started three seasons at left tackle for the Auburn Tigers. A fifth-year senior, he has excellent athleticism and length to hold up on the edge, allowing just 12 pressures last season (five on 144 true pass sets).

WR Michael Pittman Jr, 6-foot 4, 215 pounds | USC. The Giants haven’t had a big, physical, and robust receiver in a very long time. Pittman, who was also a safety and return specialist in high school, could be just one such guy to watch as he has a lot of traits desired for an X receiver.

Pittman finished last season with 35 receptions out of 44 targets for 501 yards and 4 touchdowns, showing an impressive catch radius—he adjusts well to off-target passes—and impressive straight-line speed.

According to Pro Football Focus’ 2020 draft guide, Pittman was as sure-handed as they came, dropping only three balls out of 108 catchable passes. His father, Michael Sr, played in the NFL with the Cardinals, Bucs, and Broncos

WR Chase Claypool, 6-foot 4, 229 pounds | Notre Dame. Claypool is another tall and physical receiver who has an impressive catch radius and a better grasp of the entire route tree. He’s also a tough runner in space after the catch, having broken 18 tackles on 109 career receptions.

Claypool, who grew up in Abbotsford, British Columbia, is a natural “hands” catcher who adjusts well to off-target balls and does an excellent job of faking defenders with head and leg movements.

S Ashtyn Davis, 6-foot 1, 185 pounds | California. If the Giants are looking to add more depth at the safety spot, Davis could be worth a look. He’s one of those guys who doesn’t have any one particular distinctive trait but whose combination of smarts, athleticism, and versatility makes him a sound and productive player capable of performing in man or zone coverage.

A high-motor player and solid tackler who also ran track at Cal, Davis as a walk-on for the football team, earning a starting job in 2018. In that season, he recorded four interceptions and broke up five passes, showing an amazing ability to cover from center field to the sideline. His size sometimes gets him stuck on blocks, but when given an opportunity to lay the wood on a ball carrier, he brings it.

(Note: Advanced stats from Pro Football Focus’ 2020 draft guide.)

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