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NFL Draft

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After the thrilling game in Minneapolis that consisted of a lot of offense, crafty trick plays, bold coaching decision, and the Lombardy trophy finally making its way to Philadelphia for the first time in franchise history, the NFL now turns its attention to Arlington Texas for the 83rd annual NFL draft. The draft is a time where bad teams and their fans are rewarded for their bad, losing seasons in which you as a fan don’t even know where or when your team is even playing at this point because your fantasy football team is down and your hoping for a comeback so you can brag to your friend later. In this NFL draft, the New York football Giants own the 2nd pick and it is extremely important that newly hired GM Dave Gettleman and his staff get this one right.

For the Giants, this decision might affect the franchise for years to come and if the Giants can really hit a home run on this pick, they might be bound for a quick turnaround after that dreadful 3-13 season and get the Giants back in the playoffs. In my opinion, this decision is clearer then it may seem. This is a great opportunity for the Giants because gaining a top pick in the draft doesn’t come very often, (unless you’re the Browns) so the Giants must find a way to draft a franchise player. The hard part of that is figuring out who to take what position. I feel that the Giants must take a quarterback with this selection.

Many Giants fans feel that the Giants don’t need a Quarterback because of 2-time super bowl champion, veteran Eli Manning taking the snaps. And they feel the Giants would be better off taking a star at another position such as Saquon Barkley the running back out of Penn State. This is where they are wrong. When you are picking at such a high spot, the Giants must take advantage of the opportunity and take the QB of the future. Especially because Eli Manning isn’t getting any younger and is coming off one of his worst seasons. He is 37 years old and on the back end of his career. Now whether Gettleman and recently hired Head Coach, Pat Shurmur believes the guy is Sam Darnold out of USC, Josh Rosen(UCLA), Baker Mayfield (Oklahoma) or even boom or bust signal caller Josh Allen out of Wyoming, the Giants have to find one of these young QB’s that can handle the spotlight and the New York media and be the face of the New York Giants in the near future.

There is no better spot then one of the top picks in the draft to take a franchise QB that can turn around a 3-13 team from a year ago and get the team on the right track again and there are some great QBs in this draft class. All of the top prospects have weakness that need to be fixed but all offer a certain potential that can’t be passed up. Teams that have taken Quarterbacks early on have seen quick turnarounds. Some great examples of franchise QB’s taken in the top 2 recently include, Jared Goff, (LAR) Carson Wentz, (PHI) Andrew Luck, (INDY) Jameis Winston, (TB) Marcus Mariota. (TEN) These are some of the QB’s picked in the top 2 since 2012 and 4/5 of those QB’s have led their teams to the playoffs. The Giants need other positions too but Eli is slowing down and will need to retire soon. QB desperate teams will often package several future picks to move up and select one of the elite quarterback prospects. The Giants can seize the opportunity by taking one of these high level QB’s with their top pick to quickly turn the franchise around and the Giants can avoid the nightmarish “QB mediocrity” many NFL franchises are currently in. If Gettleman and Shurmur are confident in Eli, their newly drafted QB can sit behind Eli and learn from him for a little bit until he is ready for the Giants to give him the keys to the car. Great franchise quarterbacks are extremely hard to get. (Just ask the cross-town rival New York Jets) If the Giants don’t draft a quarterback now and Eli Manning retires soon, the Giants could be stuck in a  bad QB situation for a long time and might have to pay top dollar just to get someone like Kirk Cousins under center. And if your still not convinced QB’s aren’t that important, once Jimmy Garoppolo was trade to the 49ers, he went 5-0 down the stretch and led a 1 win team to a strong 6-10 finish at the end of the season. The Giants have a great opportunity with such a high draft choice in which the franchise has only had a top 5 pick a few times in their history. A high level QB is usually what can push your team over the edge and what helps your team to be taken seriously once the playoffs roll around and the Giants have their chance to take a top prospect that will turn the franchise around. This young QB can feed the ball to Odell Beckham Jr, Sterling Shepard and Evan Engram for years to come.

Now many Giants fans disagree with me and feel the Giants don’t need a quarterback and hope for the Giants to take athletic running back Saquon Barkley with the second pick. In a recent poll of around 70 people, 47 people elected for the Giants to take Saquon and only 24 people voted for Sam Darnold, Josh Rosen, and Baker Mayfield combined! While I agree that Saquon is a once in a generational talent that will make some team extremely happy, that is not the direction the Giants should go in for several reasons. First off, if the Giants don’t improve their offensive line significantly which has been horrendous as of late, even the best runner such as Saquon will struggle to find open areas on the field. Next, many Giants fans will argue that the Giants already have their Quarterback of the future in 2017 3rd round pick Davis Webb out of Cal. Now I am not saying that this isn’t the case because the none of us have even seen him take one NFL snap. But you cannot bank your whole future on a 3rdround guy you have never seen. In college Webb had 37 TD’s 12 INT’s and completed 61% of his passes. However, he is widely criticized by NFL.com for his decision making and his non-elusiveness which are both very important for an NFL QB. There are many reasons he fell to round 3 and wasn’t a day 1 selection like Deshaun Watson, Mitchell Trubisky, and Patrick Mahomes. And if it turns out both Webb and the young quarterback that is called by the commissioner in April are great, they can trade one at a significant value because QB’s are the most valuable position in football l. Now going back to Saquon Barkley. As good as Saquon is, and as great as it would be for the Giants to have a talent like him; good, productive RB’s are easier to get via trade and free agency. Also, this is a particularly deep running back class consisting of Sony Michel, Darrius Guice, Nick Chubb, Ronald Jones, Rashad Penny and more. Running backs like Alvin Kamara, (OROY) and Kareem Hunt were a few running backs taken in the later rounds that have had great success in their rookie campaigns. The Giants could easily snag one of these running backs in the 2nd or 3rd round and get close to the same value and production Saquon would and the Giants can still draft their quarterback of the future in round 1 because franchise QB’s usually don’t sneak out of the first round. (there are exceptions)

There are many reasons why the Giants should take a Quarterback in this spot and it would be the best thing for the franchise to do to get back on their feet and quickly forget this past season. They are picking in a high spot where most of the top QB’s will be available. Eli Manning is getting old and is way past his prime. The Giants can get a star QB to replace him on a cheap, controlled contract. There are many great QB’s in this class the Giants can choose from that can lead them to the playoffs once again.  Darnold, Rosen, Mayfield or other, can help the Giants to replace Eli Manning soon and lead the team to the Super Bowl if they play their cards right. It would definitely look good on new GM Gettleman and new head coach Pat Shurmur if they drafted and developed a young new QB to replace Eli as the new face of the franchise. This opportunity doesn’t come around often so who will it be? It’s your call Gettleman.

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