New York Giants Mailbag: Draft or Free Agency?

As we close out the month of February, let's see what's on the minds of Giants fans in this week's mailbag.
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What’s up, Kace? I see the Giants addressing both sides of the ball, to be honest. The Giants need at least two receivers and two running backs, and I think they’ll take one from free agency and one in the draft at each position.

They need a veteran offensive lineman—that I could see coming from free agency. And they will need to restock their defensive line depth—I could see that going by both free agency and draft, depending on how many guys they lose at that spot.

One thing I would expect, though, is that they won’t go crazy spending on veterans. I wouldn’t go crazy with spending big money on any of these positions on the offensive side of the ball—maybe the only spot I’d spend big (because it’s how the market works) is if I had the chance to grab a pass rusher.

Hi James. Glad to see you back in the mailbag. I agree that Tomlinson is a great guy and a person you want in the locker room. And there is something to be said for retaining your own homegrown talent. 

I’ve already gone on record by writing that if the dominoes fall a certain way, they could probably keep both, but it’s a longshot. And if they have to choose, I go with the pass rusher all day, every day.

Here’s something a lot of people aren’t considering when looking at the value of Leonard Williams. The Giants played a lot of mobile quarterbacks last year where part of the defensive strategy was to contain those guys and not let them run wild.

When you play a contain game, you tend to lose something in the pass rush (hence why finding another pass rusher in the draft or free agency is probably a bigger priority for them). 

Anyway, back to my point. That Williams was able to generate 11.5 sacks despite there being an emphasis on contain is pretty darn impressive if you think about it and is a big reason he’s the top priority and why he’s going to get paid.

From Mark:

Do you think the Giants should get someone that can push Daniel Jones, like Matt Ryan? This way, if Jones does not improve, you have a quarterback that could lead the way.

Mark, why would you want to move on from Jones right now? Do you know for sure he’s not the long-term answer? Goodness, even Eli Manning got three seasons to show he could be the guy!

Seriously though, put a consistent offensive line in front of him and get the guy some receivers who don’t drop passes and give him a healthy Saquon Barkley and a little better offensive scheme, and then see what you have in him. 

If he doesn’t take that Baker Mayfield-like leap forward this year, then you regroup and make a decision before you go extending his contract. 

Hello again, Kace. Nick Gates is their center, and they signed Harrison to be the backup. If I were a betting woman, I'd probably put money down and say they're not drafting a center in Round 2 this year.  

Greetings! I hope all is good in Brazil. In order to determine how much of  a priority, how often are the Giants in their base 3-4 defense? 

I don’t have the stats in front of me, but I’m pretty sure it's way less than 50%, which, if I'm correct, that would deprioritize drafting another inside linebacker (plus I'd really like to know what the coaches think about the group they had last year).

Anyway, also take a look at how often they went to a big nickel  package where a safety served as that pseudo inside linebacker role? Again, I don’t have exact numbers, but it was more often than you think. 

My point is in trying to figure out where to prioritize what positions are needed, going through exercises such as above can help provide clarity. So to answer your question, I don’t necessarily agree that drafting another inside linebacker is necessarily on the radar, but you never know how the board falls.

What’s up, Oscar? Great question, as always. The scenario you proposed at the end is exactly why general manager Dave Gettleman always says you can’t go into the draft fixated at drafting a player for need if the value isn’t there. (You go for need when the grades are similar and one of the players fills a significant need.)

Here’s the other issue. We don’t know how the Giants view what they have. For example, do they like Julian Love as their potential second cornerback? Do they feel that Lorenzo Carter and Oshane Ximines give them the pass rush? 

It’s too soon to know all this, but hopefully, though we’ll get some clues if Joe Judge and Dave Gettleman are made available to the media in the coming week or two as they would have otherwise been at the combine had there been a combine.

My guess is Gettleman won’t lose out on a stud because he’s locked in on a specific position. And if he does, then he deserves to be fired on the spot.

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