NFL Draft Experts debate if Tennessee defensive end Derek Barnett OR UCLA outside linebacker Takkarist McKinley would be a better fit for the Giants.
With our “Make the Case” series on Giants.com, we look at projections provided by two draft experts and then ask you, the fans, to weigh in on which player you would like the Giants to select with the 23rd pick in the first round.
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In this debate, we look at Tennessee defensive end Derek Barnett vs. UCLA outside linebacker Takkarist McKinley.
Be sure to vote and Make YOUR Case in the comments below!
Derek Barnett, DE, Tennessee
Matt Miller of Bleacher Report projected Barnett, who set Tennessee’s all-time career sacks record at 33.0, breaking the previous mark of 32.0 held by the legendary Reggie White. At 6-foot-3 and 265 pounds, Barnett also recorded 52.0 career tackles for loss, second-most in school history.
Miller: “Barnett's production at Tennessee was eye-opening, but his lack of twitch and elite athleticism pushes him down the board as we get closer to the draft. Barnett is still capable of a long, productive NFL career, and starting out down that road opposite Olivier Vernon gives him the one-on-one looks from offensive lines he'll need to produce.”
Takkarist McKinley, OLB, UCLA
ESPN’s Todd McShay liked McKinley, a 6-foot-2, 265-pound pass rusher who finished his college career tied for 11th on the school’s all-time sacks list with 18. He recorded 10 of those in 2016 as he went on to earn first-team All-Pac-12 honors.
McShay: “Tight end would also be a strong possibility if either [Alabama's O.J.] Howard or [Miami’s David] Njoku were still on the board. With both gone and Jason Pierre-Paul slated to become a free agent, the Giants could be in the market for another pass-rusher. McKinley has versatility,and I love his motor. He's a natural pass-rusher with elite speed off the edge, recording 18 TFLs and 10 sacks in 2016.”