We are in a doldrums as we digest the New York Giants’ moves during the free agency and improve our last big board for the 2020 NFL draft.
And after responding to Lance Zierlein and Mel Kiper Jr.’s draft bills, we decided that this was the best time to publish our own bogus draft.
Instead of going through and mocking the whole design myself, I turned to The Draft Network’s design machine – my personal favorite. I rather agree with their predictive big board and find that their algorithm is relatively accurate.
So how did I do it?
Round 1 (No. 4) – Chase Young (EDGE, Ohio State)
“DO YOU BELIEVE IN MIRACLES!?”
“Believe it and it will happen!”
These were just two of the thoughts that came to my mind when I saw Young on the board – as well as a few other selected thoughts that Ed would probably work out anyway if he reads this before the release.
Young slipped to fourth choice when the Cincinnati Bengals LSU QB Joe Burrow, the Washington Redskins selected Ohio State CB Jeffrey Okudah (TDN’s algorithm is likely to be informed by Quenton Dunbar trading), and the Detroit Lions Auburn DT Derrick Brown.
The Giants, who still manage to have the best EDGE player in the draft – a position that is desperately needed – fall into their lap even though they slip out of the second overall selection. This is an ideal situation. Young is not only well trained when he comes from the state of Ohio, but also an excellent athlete and athletic than any Bosa brother who finishes college. Young could be one of the best EDGE players in the league at the start of his career, and he still has room to improve.
Other options: Who cares!?
Round 2 (No. 36) – Ezra Cleveland (OT, State of Boise)
I don’t complain in any way about catching Young in the first round, but EDGE isn’t the only premium position that needs immediate help. The giants need help on the offensive and currently have no real starting device.
Cleveland is a high-ceille tackle brochure with all the tools to take on a start job right outside the door. It doesn’t quite have the size and gloss of the Big 4 tackles in this class, but it’s remarkably sporty and still has the basics. He needs to gain strength and is not ideal for a power running game, but works well for the zone blocking schemes in which Saquon Barkley thrives.
Other options: Zack Baun (LB, Wisconsin), Ross Blacklock (DT, TCU), Neville Gallimore (DT, Oklahoma), K.J. Hamler (WR, Penn State)
Round 3 (No. 99) – Bryan Edwards (WR, South Carolina)
I have to admit I would have cut it short if my card was the actual design. My two best options were available and I knew I would roll the dice on the ones I hadn’t chosen because there was a steep drop.
I decided to go with Edwards at the end of the third round and just keep my fingers crossed so my other choice doesn’t get out of the game 11 picks later. Edwards is of good size and athleticism to stretch the defense vertically, as well as the ability to create with the ball in his hands. He has the potential to be a key sleeper in this design after being held back by the South Carolina offensive program and quarterback game, and then kept out of the design process by a knee sprain and broken foot days before the Scouting Combine. The fact that teams can’t examine his health could further reduce his draft inventory, but the fact that he was as productive on the same offensive as Deebo Samuel is a good sign of his transition to the NFL.
Other options: Tyler Biadasz (C, Wisconsin), Alohi Gilman (S, Notre Dame)
Round 4 (No. 110) – Tyler Biadasz (C, Wisconsin)
Somehow my gambling paid off. There were a few lines in front of Biadasz on the board and only a few teams with blatant line needs, so the numbers were in my favor.
Personally, I don’t think there is any reason for Biadasz to fall that far, other than that it didn’t live up to the hype of an outstanding 2018 season. And it’s not that his 2019 season was bad either. But more band revealed a few more nits to choose from, and for a player who was ranked top 20 after their second year, these molehills seemed much bigger.
Biadasz has the ability to perform a variety of blocking schemes, is very smart and should be able to act as a starting center for the Giants immediately. I think his technique is good enough that he can play at around 310 (out of around 320 that he played in Wisconsin) while maintaining his skill level while improving his speed at handling the speed of the NFL caliber.
Other options: Alohi Gilman (S, Notre Dame)
Round 5 (No. 150) – Julian Blackmon (S, Utah)
I really wanted to address the vacant security and linebacker positions before day three of the draft, but here we are. The value never really came to me in these positions, and I was able to find good value in premium positions that are urgently needed so that I am not too upset.
Blackmon is development security that was recently converted by a broad recipient. He still needs a lot of polishing, but his sportiness, his range in deep zones and his ball skills are worth an investment. Of the available security prospects, he’s the one who best projects on a free security role, and while things may be bumpy. First, he might go well with Julian Love, who is playing closer to the border.
Other options: Devin Asiasi (TE, UCLA), Isaiah Hodgins (WR, State of Ohio), J.R. Reed (S., Georgia)
Round 6 (No. 183) – Tanner Muse (LB / S, Clemson)
Muse is an interesting perspective. He is listed as a security guard, but when he saw him with the rest of the defenders at the 2020 NFL Scouting Combine, it was clear that Muses was the best way to be a linebacker in the NFL. I had kept Muse in mind, along with Troy Dye, Kyle Dugger, and Jeremy Chinn as possible consolation prizes after handing over Isaiah Simmons to Chase Young.
Muse has a 6-foot-227-pound linebacker size while also performing a 4.41-second 40-yard dash. He didn’t do the agility exercises, but the field exercises in the combine showed that while he didn’t have “DB” mobility levels, he would be a very fast and agile linebacker. This is not an ideal solution, but we are currently looking for players who can fill a niche and help in special teams
Other options: Antonio Gandy-Golden (WR, Freedom)
Round 7 (No. 218) – Davion Taylor (LB, Colorado)
Davion Taylor talks about filling a niche and participating in special teams. He is an under-sized but explosively athletic off-ball linebacker (measurable). He is not yet a polished, finished product, but for a selection in the seventh round he should be able to participate in special teams at the beginning of his career and develop into a defensive contributor with coaching.
Other options: Binjimen Victor (WR, State of Ohio)
Round 7 (No. 238) – Alex Taylor (OT, State of South Carolina)
Alex Taylor sticks to the topic of fascinating development prospects and features rare physical tools at 6-foot-8, a lanky 308 pound, and 36 1/8 inch arms that lead to a 5.09-second 40-yard dash an almost 10-foot long jump. He is agile, has an explosive lower body and a lot of length. If he can keep his hips down and play with better strength, he has the tools that trainers want to work with. This is a lottery ticket, but there are few drawbacks late in the seventh round.
Other options: James Proche (WR, SMU), Levonta Taylor (CB, FSU)
Round 7 (No. 247) – Levonta Taylor (CB, FSU)
It’s a shame for me that I let Taylor hold out for so long. I honestly haven’t seen him on the board yet, and that’s my bad one. To be honest, I probably would have picked it before my last two picks in round seven and maybe even before Muse in round six. Taylor suffered a back injury in 2018 and is not yet back with the player he was before. The advantage is that he now has experience as security and the advantage of playing slot corner.
He’s not big or fast, but he has fast feet and before he was injured he was a good cover cornerback. The Giants have to find an answer to their position in the slot corner, and Taylor could be an option under the radar.
Other options: James Proche (WR, SMU)
Round 7 (No. 255) – Joe Reed (WR, Virginia)
For the final selection in the design, I chose an “offensive weapon” based on the fact that at the end of the design a player is chosen who can do this a lot of gives you the best chance that the selection pays off. Reed played a number of different roles in Virginia’s offenses by leaning on wide receivers, slot receivers, h-backs, and running backs. It has a versatile frame at 6 feet, 224 pounds, while also having very good sportiness. He has reliable hands, good vision and the ability to be a key special team player. He can play on all reporting teams and has five kick-back touchdowns in his college career.
I would also have had no problem choosing Carter Coughlin – you can never have too many pass rushers. But I felt that Reed’s versatility gave him a higher chance of staying as a contributor.
Other options: Carter Coughlin (EDGE, Minnesota)