Bill Wippert/Associated Press
On the surface, the Giants’ “conundrum” at linebacker could probably be easily solved if the front office actually decided to draft guys at that position.
While that could happen if there is someone in the draft that catches their fancy—and it would be surprising if, given the needs at defensive end, safety and receiver, linebacker becomes a Day 1 draft priority—the Giants could do a little reshuffling at this position as well.
One move that needs to be considered is sliding Devon Kennard from the strong side to the middle, a position he played at times at USC, according to his NFL.com draft profile.
The Giants actually did explore that possibility as a fallback plan last year during the spring, moving Kennard to the middle for some extra looks.
"He has an ability, he does a great job of getting the calls out, and knowing where to play. He's a big 'backer, big man," former Giants linebackers coach Jim Herrmann said, according to Tom Rock of Newsday.
The Giants would go on to scrap that plan in the summer, partially due to the emergence of Uani 'Unga in training camp.
However, ‘Unga soon proved that he’s not an ideal cover guy and is a backup at best going forward.
Although Jasper Brinkley held up well when put into the role following yet another season-ending injury to starter Jon Beason, Kennard probably offers the most athleticism and instincts for that critical position if he can stay on the field.
Want an added bonus? At 25 years old, Kennard is nearly six years younger than Brinkley, which means he can potentially be the long-term solution on the inside.