With the 2019 NFL Draft a little more than two weeks away, the Giants.com crew discusses the biggest variables that will affect what the Giants do in the first round.
JOHN SCHMEELK: While there is a lot of reporting and speculation that the Cardinals will select Oklahoma quarterback Kyler Murray first overall and trade current QB Josh Rosen, there hasn’t been any tangible evidence that’s the case. If the Cardinals use the pick on one of the top defensive players in the draft instead of drafting a quarterback, it changes a lot of what might happen afterwards. The 49ers at No. 2 would certainly get phone calls from teams interested in Murray or Ohio State signal-caller Dwayne Haskins, as would the Jets, who select third.
If no offers are forthcoming to any of the top five teams and no quarterbacks are taken, the Giants would have their choice of any quarterback in the draft or potentially the sixth-best non-quarterback prospect. They might also receive phone calls to move down in the draft. It certainly changes the formula from what a lot of people in the industry are thinking the top five picks may look like. What the Cardinals do at No. 1 will have a huge impact on what the Giants might be thinking at No. 6.
DAN SALOMONE: The Giants hold the sixth and 17th picks. You can’t forget that what the 10 teams do in between those choices is just as important as the five before their first selection. Will someone trade in front of the Giants at No. 6? There are some possible suitors in this quarterback-crazed league. Remember what the Rams and Eagles did in 2016? They both started with picks in the teens before working their way up to first (Jared Goff) and second (Carson Wentz), respectively.
The 2018 QB class is pretty similar on the surface, with two players grabbing most of the headlines while the rest are on the backburner. Will there be blockbuster deals to grab Kyler Murray and Dwayne Haskins? We will find out in 17 days. Of course, the biggest variable of them all is what Giants general manager Dave Gettleman really thinks of the quarterbacks. That, not need, will dictate everything. He has a strong enough conviction to his philosophy that he won’t reach. Doing so tends to set a club back years and years.
LANCE MEDOW: This draft is no different than any other, and it’s going to come down to where the quarterbacks go and whether one or two teams will be aggressive in pursuing the player they want. As it stands, based strictly on need and putting the speculation surrounding Josh Rosen’s future with the Cardinals aside, the only team picking ahead of the Giants that might be looking for a quarterback is the Tampa Bay, although new coach Bruce Arians has been supportive of Jameis Winston, whose future has been the subject of some speculation. The Niners acquired Jimmy Garoppolo two years ago and signed him to a lucrative contract; the Jets drafted Sam Darnold last year; and the Raiders recently locked up Derek Carr with a long-term contract. That’s why there’s no guarantee those teams remain in their current spots. If another team comes calling with an attractive trade offer to pursue a quarterback, one of those teams could easily change spots.
Regardless of the year, the big variable will always be where the quarterbacks land. If the Giants are high on a few pass rushers, given the needs of the roster, teams moving up to grab quarterbacks before the Giants select at No. 6 overall could work to their advantage. I don’t think that would force Ohio State defensive end Nick Bosa to fall to sixth, but it’s very possible another premier pass rusher could still be on the board at that time.