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Experts react to Giants' Draft Selections


Media experts react to the Giants 2018 NFL Draft selections.

Day 1

"Powerful. His lower body is unbelievable. At 233 pounds, he runs a 4.4 40. Talk about a powerful man. The only thing you can possibly say on the negative side is he tries to make too many big runs. The New York Giants just got better because of this guy." -- Mike Mayock, NFL Network

"He has it all physically and athletically, a 233-pound back, tremendously strong. Big hands for ball security is very important. He's a kid who has tremendous lower-body strength. He runs a 4.4 40, so he can break the home run."
– Mel Kiper Jr., ESPN

"The Giants selected the Penn State running back with the No. 2 overall pick Thursday, passing up the opportunity to draft USC quarterback Sam Darnold or possibly trade down to a team like the Broncos, who were reportedly interested in a move up, according to NFL Network Insider Ian Rapoport. Barkley is the rare running back prospect who could be worth passing on all those riches. Like LaDainian Tomlinson with an extra 20 pounds of muscle, Barkley is the perfect fit for this era in the NFL. He can stay on the field all three downs, excelling as an inside runner, pass protector and receiver out of the backfield or in the slot. Barkley was drafted this high, however, for his incredible vision and ability to make big plays on the outside. He excels in space and is a matchup problem no matter where he lines up on the field. After years of running backs not being valued in the draft, NFL teams are realizing that unicorns like Todd Gurley, Ezekiel Elliott and now possibly Barkley have incredible value to change a team's offense on every down." -- Gregg Rosenthal,

"Forget finding Eli Manning's replacement at quarterback—whoever that is might not play for another three years. New GM Dave Gettleman was brought in to build on a ready-now team, and a once-in-a-generation running back can help that. The Giants now have the dynamic ballcarrier to re-define what has lately been an atrocious ground game. New head coach Pat Shurmur did a great job in Minnesota marrying his running game and passing game. Barkley can help in both areas, and an erudite QB like Manning can check him in and out of the best plays accordingly." -- Andy Benoit, Sports Illustrated

"Widely regarded as the top player in this draft, he aced the scouting combine (4.4 40, 29 reps on bench, 41-inch vert) and posted 3,801 yards from scrimmage and 82 catches in his last two years for the Nittany Lions. Barkley is a bigger, faster version of Adrian Peterson coming out of college and instantly legitimizes a poor Giants ground game. He forms a dangerous trio with Eli Manning and Odell Beckham and should help instantly return the franchise to contending status for the short run and long term. An every-down player with great speed, instincts and intangibles, there's no reason to expect Barkely won't make the same kind of rookie splash that Todd Gurley, Ezekiel Elliott and Leonard Fournette have had in recent years." -- Nate Davis, USA TODAY Sports


Day 2:

Round 2 (Pick No. 34): G Will Hernandez, UTEP

"Run game mauler. I love the high-school wrestler background because it typically means you have great balance and leverage. He just doesn't like people. A little better than you think in pass protection. When he locks on with heavy hands, it's over." -- Mike Mayock, NFL Network

> A Giant Decision: Inside the Draft Room
> O-Line rebuild continues with Will Hernandez
> Experts react to Giants' Day 2 picks
> Giants draft Lorenzo Carter at 66th
> DT B.J. Hill selected at number 69
> Saquon Barkley ready to make impact
> Inside the Saquon Barkley selection

"Will Hernandez is a classic guard. When you close your eyes and you think of an NFL guard, you see Will Hernandez. Forty-nine starts he had at left guard at UTEP, this guy is experienced. He's seen it all. He's powerful in the run game. He's got a back the size of a city block, and he does a great job of driving defensive linemen off of the ball. … This guy is going to show up every day with the lunch pail. He's physical. He's tough. And he takes nothing from nobody. I think he sets an early tempo in his career, and this offensive line just got better with the insertion of Will Hernandez at guard." – Todd McShay, ESPN

"He lines up at left guard for the Miners and completely dominates in the run game. He is quick out of his stance and uses his upper strength to torque and dump defenders at the point of attack. He does a nice job of re-working his hands to maintain inside position and maintain leverage. In pass protection, he has the power base to anchor bull rushers and surprising quickness to redirect vs. athletic defenders. He piles up some gnarly knockdowns when he's uncovered. He's always looking for extra work. Overall, Hernandez is a tempo setter in the run game and more than adequate in the passing game. He had a great Senior Bowl and combine." – Daniel Jeremiah, NFL Network

"Hernandez is a powerful drive blocker who seals off linebackers at the second level and is athletic enough to develop into an effective zone blocker. He gets set quickly and anchors well in pass pro. He has the potential to develop into a Pro Bowler despite his shorter arms. Fixing the offensive line is one of new general manager Dave Gettleman's top priorities, and he lands the second-best guard in the draft at the top of Round 2. Hernandez is a day one starter who will create seams for running back Saquon Barkley and help keep Eli Manning upright." -- Steve Muench, ESPN

Round 3 (Pick No. 66): OLB Lorenzo Carter, Georgia

"This is a team that knows pass rushers and this kid has the speed to be a good one." – Pete Prisco, CBS Sports

"When you look at Lorenzo Carter, if you can mold him and make him into a better pass rusher, then that kind of completes the whole realm of what he can do in the NFL as a complete, every-down linebacker." – Mel Kiper Jr., ESPN

"New coordinator James Bettcher is installing the 3-4 defense he ran in Arizona, and Olivier Vernon is the only proven edge rusher. Carter's frame, length and versatility make him a perfect fit for the scheme, plus he has the top-end speed to develop into a productive edge rusher." -- Steve Muench, ESPN

"I love his length and athleticism. He moves really well for a big guy. He's probably best as an outside linebacker but he needs to get a little bit stronger at the point of attack." -- Joel Klatt, FOX/NFL Network

Round 3 (Pick: No. 69): DT B.J. Hill, N.C. State

"From a standpoint of a guy not getting enough notoriety, he was the guy you would put at or near the top of the list. Why? Because Bradley Chubb was getting all the attention. There's B.J. Hill on the inside able to get after the quarterback and make a lot of run stops. … The production was good enough to make you believe he can be a quality starter." – Mel Kiper Jr., ESPN

"Dalvin Tomlinson and Damon Harrison are outstanding defensive tackles, but neither is a pure pass rusher. The hope is Hill will lend juice there, allowing Tomlinson and Harrison to rest for an additional six or seven snaps each game." – Andy Benoit, Sports Illustrated

 "The Giants already have one double-team eater in Snacks Harrison, and Hill can provide some immediate insurance on the interior of the defensive line. Don't bother to run inside if you see those two on the field at the same time." -- Chris Sprow, ESPN

"Hill is a one-gapping, upfield defensive tackle with decent athleticism who seems to be able to find the football at an adequate rate despite lacking some play strength. While Hill's production has been solid, he will have to develop more strength at the point of attack or become a more explosive upfield player to set himself apart and become a rotational defensive tackle." -- Lance Zierlein,

Day 3:

Round 4 (Pick No. 108): QB Kyle Lauletta, Richmond

"One of the top small-school prospects in this year's NFL Draft, Lauletta had a really good career at Richmond, a two-time captain, three-year starter. He's 26-13 as a starter and led Richmond to the FCS playoffs both 2015 and 2016. He's got adequate size, pretty mobile in the pocket, not a running threat but can move around. What I like about him – and the more I studied him on tape, the more I did like his game -- he's got fast eyes. He goes through his progressions quickly, and I think he does a very good job of throwing with anticipation and putting the ball into spots, especially in the short and intermediate game. He's tough. He's going to hang in the pocket, stare down the gun barrel. When you look at Lauletta, know he's not one of the elite quarterbacks in this year's class, but this guy's got a chance to be a solid starter one day in the NFL. I think early in his career he can be a really good backup." – Todd McShay, ESPN

"Solid game tape. Really good feet and quick release. He had four offensive coordinators in five years, and I've got to tell you, the more tape I watched of him, the more I liked this kid." – Mike Mayock, NFL Network

"Grade: A. Quick-strike QB with quality accuracy on short/intermediate throws. Aggressive. Needs work downfield and against pressure." -- Chris Trapasso, CBS Sports

"He's very efficient in the pocket. He's got a nice, clean stroke. He doesn't have a huge arm, but enough arm. You saw in the Senior Bowl what he was capable of, and I think he's between – is he a backup, is he a starter? I think he's got the potential to start." – Daniel Jeremiah, NFL Network

"After passing on QBs on the first two days of the draft, the Giants take one who could eventually compete for the starting job once Eli hangs them up. Lauletta is the highly efficient, accurate passer that Pat Shurmer values." -- Mark Dulgerian, NFL Network

Round 5 (Pick No. 139): DT RJ McIntosh, Miami

"We talk about the Giants and Dave Gettleman's obsession with bodies on the front line, and they go and get another defensive tackle to add to the rotation. He's a big body, can penetrate. You are trying to wear people down with these big players. When you see the Philadelphia Eagles win a Super Bowl with eight, nine defensive linemen playing in your rotation, teams have a tendency to copy that. And Dave Gettleman is a professed big-man lover. They're going to add big bodies to the line whenever he has the opportunity on both sides of the ball." – Bucky Brooks, NFL Network

"One of the things he's famous for is he had a couple of really good plays against Quenton Nelson (the sixth overall pick out of Notre Dame), and there's not many people who have tape. That's like finding somebody who beat a young Mike Tyson." -- Lance Zierlein, NFL Network "Grade: A. Hog Mollie draft continues for Gettleman. Quick swim move. Good bulk and power. Pass-rush specialist." -- Chris Trapasso, CBS Sports

"David Gettleman builds his rosters from the inside-out and McIntosh fits his front as a penetrating 1-gapper. The team needed pass rush depth from its interior." -- Mark Dulgerian, NFL Network

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