PFF predicts EDGE for Giants in latest mock draft
With the 2021 NFL Draft less than two months away, we are officially in the heart of mock draft season.
Plenty of draft analysts from around the country will take their turn in trying to predict how the first round of this year's draft will play out. Of course, the amount of uncertainty surrounding the draft each year makes it impossible to accurately guess how each and every pick will go down. However, that won't stop draft experts from trying.
In Pro Football Focus' latest mock draft, Eric Eager and George Chahrouri use analytics to try to predict the first round in what they refer to as "the mock draft you love to hate."
As Eager and Chahrouri write, "This collection of 32 picks, along with their accompanying trades, represents the selections we would make at each position, leaning on our college-to-pro projections and all of the film study and analysis that goes into creating PFF's Big Board and Draft Guide."
In this mock draft, LSU's Ja'Marr Chase, Alabama's DeVonta Smith and Jaylen Waddle and Florida's Kyle Pitts are all gone by the time the Giants are on the clock at No. 11. With all of the top offensive playmakers off the board, PFF has the Giants drafting Michigan edge rusher Kwity Paye with their first-round pick.
Paye only played in four games in 2020, registering two sacks, four tackles for loss and 16 total tackles (12 solo), which was good enough to earn him Second-Team All-Big Ten honors for the second straight year.
In 2019, he recorded 50 total tackles (26 solo), 6.5 sacks, and 12.5 tackles for loss over 12 games.
The 6-foot-4, 272-pound edge rusher has shown flashes of his potential throughout his time at Michigan, which PFF believes will be enough for the Giants to take him at No. 11.
"The Giants struck gold last offseason with the acquisition of James Bradberry in free agency, and there was some temptation to take another corner here to fortify a strength," Eager writes. "However, given the value proposition of elite edge players taken high in the draft relative to what they are paid as veterans at the top end, Paye is an athletic bet the Giants need to make here to secure their first elite edge defender in quite some time."
NFL Media analyst Daniel Jeremiah updated his ranking of the top 50 prospects in the 2021 NFL Draft for the final time before the start of the draft.
3 things Mel Kiper thinks about 2021 NFL Draft
The new league year begins in two weeks, which will allow free agents to begin talking with teams and agreeing to new deals. Free agency will likely play a large role in determining which direction teams go in when it comes time for the NFL Draft next month.
The Giants will have some big decisions to make prior to the start of the draft. As it stands today, the Giants have six selections in this year's draft, including each of their own picks in the first three rounds.
The other three picks - their own in the fourth-round, their own in the sixth and Arizona's sixth-round pick (acquired in the Markus Golden trade) - are not set as compensatory picks have yet to be announced, which will alter the draft order in the latter rounds.
ESPN's draft analyst Mel Kiper jumped on a conference call this week to share some of his thoughts on the draft. He touched on a wide variety of topics, including some of his favorite prospects at certain positions that could interest the Giants. Here are some of the topics he touched on during the call:
1. WR is the strongest position in this year's draft
2. Kiper envisions good fit for Giants and Waddle
3. Edge group features many "boom-or-bust" guys
How FA shaped 2007 and 2011 championship teams
Beginning in 2004, the Giants began a wave of free agent signings that would provide the foundation for their championship runs in 2007 and 2011.
Check out the video below to look back at the free agent moves that helped bring home the Lombardi Trophy twice in four years.