John Michael Schmitz named among biggest steals of draft
The Giants earned strong marks from NFL analysts for their seven-man 2023 draft class.
Among those selections was offensive lineman John Michael Schmitz.
The center out of Minnesota was taken with the 57th overall pick in the second round of the draft. Following his dominant performance in 2022 that led to him being named First-Team All-American by the Associated Press, Schmitz was ranked among the best at his position heading into the weekend.
After the draft was complete, many experts from across the NFL landscape named Schmitz among the biggest steals of the draft.
Here is what the experts had to say about the Giants' second-round pick.
Pro Football Focus - 11 biggest steals of the draft
"If the Giants had made this pick in the first round, nobody would have really batted an eye. He led all centers with a 92.3 PFF grade in 2022 and graded well both on zone and gap plays. He's a big guy but can really move and was a four-year starter at Minnesota. Simply put, he is one of the best run-blockers at the position to enter the draft in recent years."
NFL.com's Bucky Brooks - 10 perfect player-team fits
"The Giants have become a blue-collar squad under the direction of head coach Brian Daboll. Schmitz gives them another rugged frontline blocker who specializes in paving a clear path for runners at the line of scrimmage. New York appears committed to running the ball with Saquon Barkley and Daniel Jones, and Schmitz has a chance to make his impact as a tone-setter at the point of attack, thanks to his combination of athleticism and nastiness."
ESPN's Mel Kiper Jr. - Favorite picks from Day 2
"The Giants landed my top-ranked center in Schmitz late in Round 2. That's a steal. He fills an immediate need. I was surprised he lasted that long."
CBS Sports' Cody Benjamin - NFL Draft's biggest Day 2 steals
"You can't go wrong beefing up the trenches, and you definitely can't go wrong spending a late second (No. 57) on a technically sound center who's even drawn some Creed Humphrey comparisons. Schmitz is leaner (6-4, 301) but solid in all aspects up front, and he already projects as an instant upgrade as a starting center for a surprise playoff contender. And if you don't love the idea of using a premium pick on a center, just know Schmitz has the goods to transition to guard as well."
ESPN's Todd McShay - Giants' best value pick
"The Giants wasted no time in attacking their needs, and as much as I really liked the Deonte Banks (Maryland CB) and Jalin Hyatt (Tennessee WR) picks on Days 1 and 2, respectively, this one is clear for me. It's Schmitz, who will be a 10-year starter for New York. He was my No. 2 center and a top-50 prospect, and his tape is a treat to watch. Schmitz has the mirror-and-slide quickness to take away interior bull rushers and the power to open lanes in the run game. I know running back Saquon Barkley is happy about this pick -- Schmitz takes great angles as a zone blocker at the second level."
The Athletic's Dane Brugler - Favorite Giants pick
"This is one of those picks that I helped will into existence – I did two multi-round mocks in April and had Schmitz landing with the Giants at No. 57 both times (despite Twitter telling me there was "no way" he'd fall that far). While he's not a top-tier athlete, Schmitz is a rock-solid player who can be a productive starter when his hands and feet stay on the same page. This is a Day 1 NFL starter."
ESPN's Matt Miller - Favorite prospect-to-team fit
"The middle of the line needed an upgrade, and Minnesota's Schmitz is the perfect fit given his mobility and accuracy blocking in space and on the move. He'll be a plug-and-play upgrade with Creed Humphrey-like early-impact potential."
CBS Sports' Chris Trapasso - Best Giants pick
"Instant starter at center. Large but nimble. Reach blocks galore on his film. Recovery ability is there too. Not dominant but simply blocks everything. Fills a major need."
View the top photos of offensive lineman John Michael Schmitz's career at Minnesota.
Currently on Giants.com
View photos of the Giants' draft picks touring the Quest Diagnostics Training Center.
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