What the Experts Are Saying About New York Giants Draft Possibilities
It's been an unusually noisy offseason for the New York Giants. Cutting ties with running back Ahmad Bradshaw and former Pro Bowl end Osi Umenyiora, Big Blue will have ample opportunities to stock a roster and fill a starting lineup in April's draft.
After re-signing tackle Will Beatty to a five-year deal Wednesday, the Giants will likely look to bolster their defense in the first round.
Check out what experts around the country are sizing up for the G-Men, and which projected draftees would make the most sense in New York.
Dane Brugler, CBS Sports: Ezekiel Ansah, DE, Bringham Young
Brugler has the Giants snagging Ansah in the first round. A linebacker at BYU with freakish athleticism, Ansah will play defensive end in the pros.
Ansah's garnered comparisons to current Giant Jason Pierre-Paul, a thought that must have Big Blue fans salivating. A sophomore walk-on who relies on his speed more than football smarts, this could be a natural replacement for Osi Umenyiora.
Despite just 4.5 sacks in 2012, Ansah's a great fit on paper. While the Giants need more help in the secondary and at linebacker, Ansah's upside is tough to knock here.
Rob Rang, CBS Sports: Tyler Eifert, TE, Notre Dame
Rang has the G-Men taking tight end Tyler Eifert, who broke out in Notre Dame's surprising 2012 with 50 receptions and four touchdown grabs.
Eifert's a huge target at 6'6", and was the second-leading receiver for the Fighting Irish. His quickness causes problems for linebackers covering in zone, while his size makes him a viable option over the middle or down the field.
Still, Martellus Bennett was more than serviceable at the tight end spot last year, and the Giants have more pressing needs on the defensive side of the ball. Though Bennett's future with the team is uncertain, it's clear he wants to be in New York.
Don Banks, Sports Illustrated: Datone Jones, DE, California Los Angeles
Another defensive end?
Experts are high on the Giants snagging an end rusher in the first round. Banks has New York taking Datone Jones, a UCLA senior who notched 5.5 sacks last year.
Fast off the edge and comfortable in the 4-3, Jones is more of a traditional pick than Ansah. He's a workhorse that could immediately provide some physicality to the league's 31st-ranked defense.
While Jones sits lower on most draft boards and isn't quite an exciting pick, this makes some sense here.
Gil Brandt, NFL.com: Alec Ogletree, ILB, Georgia
Ogletree's another freak athlete who can make plays on the outside or stuff the run up the middle. Though a past DUI conviction is troubling, Ogletree's draft stock remains healthy heading into March.
With double-digit tackles posted in all but two games last year, Ogletree is the most logical pick thus far. He could vie for starting time in training camp, with veteran linebacker Michael Boley cut this offseason.
Walter Football: Damontre Moore, DE/OLB, Texas A&M
Walter Football strayed from Ogletree in its latest mock, opting to give the Giants pass rusher Damontre Moore. Despite an unimpressive combine performance, in which he sustained an injury and posted just 12 reps on the bench press, Walter Football likes Moore's natural skill set.
Moore recorded three sacks against Florida back in September, and maxed out at 17 tackles against Louisiana Tech last October. Once a top 15 prospect, Moore's been slipping in post-combine mocks.
With a slew of other proven pass-rushers in this class, and no momentum riding Moore's way, it's tough to see this one panning out.
Yet Walter Football has Ezekiel Ansah falling to the Browns at No. 6. Experts are just that, but February is worlds away from April for now.