If recent history has taught us anything it is that the New York Giants' rookie draft class will be unpredictable.
Take last year as an example. On the positive side—despite being a first-round pick—no one could have predicted that Justin Pugh would not only start all 16 games at right tackle for Big Blue, but also be the team’s best offensive lineman, according to his 7.1 Pro Football Focus rating (subscription required). Negatively, Damontre Moore appeared to be a strong candidate to have an impactful rookie season after his first preseason game last August.
However, he didn’t register a sack in 136 defensive snaps and saw his only highlight come on special teams.
We can even go back several years to 2007, when a diminutive running back named Ahmad Bradshaw was selected in the seventh round and initially stayed true to his draft position by gaining only 39 rushing yards as a third-stringer over the first 14 games of the season.
Bradshaw, though, burst out of the shadows with a memorable 88-yard touchdown run in Week 16 against Buffalo that all but sealed a Giants playoff berth. He went on to play a key role in Big Blue’s playoff run to a Super Bowl title with 208 yards rushing and one touchdown in four postseason games.
The point of this mostly pleasant look back is that some of the seven players New York drafted last weekend will perform better or worse than their draft position. In rare cases, it may be a drastic swing one way or the other.
The following four slides are my take on which players will surprise. The slides are ordered based on the boldness of the prediction—from least to most bold.