In watching the Giants this past season, the two most glaring weak points were their secondary and offensive line, in that order.
These were the main areas that I wanted to see addressed in the 2007 draft. However, I can't say that I'm overly pleased with new GM Jerry Reese's decisions in his first go-around on the New York hot seat.
Reese attempted to address his number one problem with first-round pick Aaron Ross (CB, Texas) and seventh-round pick Michael Johnson (S, Arizona).
While Ross is a great athlete, he lacks adequate coverage skills—which is the Giants' top need, and the most important skill set for a corner to have.
I haven't seen Ross play enough to know if his athleticism can make up for his coverage foibles, but I would have preferred to see Reese go with Joe Staley, the offensive lineman out of Central Michigan.
The Giants' O-line is aging, and the loss of of Luke Pettigout makes a new young lineman a must-have. Granted, the Giants drafted Adam Koets out of Oregon State in round six, but I think they would have been better off going with Staley in round one and waiting until the second round to grab a corner.
That brings me to the Giants' round-two choice, USC WR Steve Smith.
Wideout wasn't the Giants' main concern, but I think this was a situation where they just couldn't pass up a high-value player relatively late in the draft.
Eli Manning clearly struggled with consistency last season, and his WRs didn't always help him. Given that Amani Toomer is approaching the end of his career, I look forward to seeing whether Smith's speed and route-running can complement Plaxico Burress.
In the fourth round, the Giants took Brown OLB Zak DeOssie, the lone Ivy Leaguer selected. Deossie figures to start out as a backup—an area of need for the Giants after the release of LaVar Arrington and Carlos Emmons.
The Giants also picked up DT Jay Alford from Penn State, TE Kevin Boss from Western Oregon, and RB Ahmad Bradshaw from Marshall. I would expect all three players to see limited time next year, as those are some of the deeper positions on the Giants' roster.
My overall take on this draft is that the Giants did a good job choosing athletic players that could be starters early in their careers. Still, I don't think the picks really addressed the weaknesses that were exposed so frequently last year. I'm most intrigued by Smith, and how he'll be able to help Manning...who ultimately holds the keys to the kingdom.