Giants general manager Dave Gettleman met the media Wednesday at the 2018 NFL Combine:
Q: What is your evaluation of Davis Webb?
A: As Pat (Shurmur) said, there is only so much to watch. He has not had a lot of NFL experience. We liked him down in Carolina in the draft. He is pretty highly rated. It is kind of like having a Christmas or a Hanukkah present that you get to unwrap eventually.
Q: You picked Christian McCaffrey top-10 last year. There is a common theory that you can get running backs later in the draft. With Saquon Barkley, where do you fall on top 10 vs running backs later in the draft?
A: The bottom line is: is the guy a football player? This whole myth of devaluing running backs, I find it kind of comical. At the end of the day, if he's a great player, he's a great player. It doesn't matter what position he is. The other thing, listening to Pat, sometimes I think it gets lost that football is the ultimate team game. You blow the whistle, 11 guys have to go out there. Offense, defense and special teams. Everyone has to understand that every player is important. That is why when you are looking at the second pick of the draft, which we are, the first thing we have to determine is, is this guy worthy of being the second pick of any draft? Not just this year's draft, of any draft. You make that determination and you move forward. (The Carolina writers) have seen my act down there. If he's a great player, I don't care how stacked we are at the position, we are taking him. It is all about accumulating talent.
Q: You spoke about wanting to avoid 'quarterback hell'. How much does it weigh on you that you have a quarterback that is towards the end of his career and you want to make sure the franchise is OK?
A: Really and truly, obviously I think about it. It is a monster puzzle that we are putting together. There are other things that you have to look at as well. We know that if you don't have a QB, it is going to be a long season. We know that. We will come to the right conclusion.
Q: What is your general perception of this QB class?
A: I tell you what, it is an interesting class. All shapes and sizes, all flavors. This is like Howard Johnson back in the day. It is a real interesting group. I'm excited about meeting some of these guys here. It is going to be fun. Obviously we will be busy once the combine is over, visiting. You have your 35 visits. That will be part of the process. It is a really interesting group.
Q: How important is that Combine interview?
A: It is only 15 minutes. At the end of the day, can you really know anyone in 15 minutes? It is like speed dating. At the end of the day, it is an introduction.
Q: The fact that if you take a QB, the goal is to not have him play versus the No. 2 guy that is not a quarterback and could come in and make an immediate impact on a team. How much insurance do you need?
A: Well, no one wants the one to go down. You don't want to get there. At the end of the day, you evaluate and you bring the guys that you believe in. You go through camp. Again, when you start camp, your roster shuffling does not stop. Roster building is a 12-month season. That is just the way it is. You have to understand that things happen and players become available. You have to be willing to pull the trigger. We will be ready to do that.
Q: How much will Webb's presence on the roster affect your decision-making process when it comes to taking a QB?
A: Like I said before, we had him highly-rated, Pat thinks highly of him, just as anyone with a small NFL sample size. It is all part of it.
Q: For years, college linemen have been standing up and have not been ready for the NFL game. Does the NFL have to adjust at some point that this is what some of the linemen coming in are doing? Is there a happy medium in terms of both sides making it work? A lot of times it has not been working.
A: That is a hell of a question. At the end of the day, if you watch football, obviously the college game, a lot of it is really different. If you watch how it has evolved, it has changed. Style, whatever. Really and truly, if you watch the teams that win in the NFL, you have quarterbacks that are making plays from the pocket and you have offensive lines that are running old school NFL runs with little twists. Everyone has two O-line coaches. It is really imperative that they be great teachers. Some of these kids, there are guys that start for four years and the only time they have their hand in the dirt is if they fall down. It is two points the whole time and occasionally you will see them in the four-point on the goal line. Your two O-line coaches have to be great teachers. The other thing you have to do is get them as many reps as possible. There is a theory that you need 5,000 reps before you are ready. I don't know if I subscribe to it, but you think about it. Obviously that is not just on the field, it is in practice as well, but it takes time. Think about positions on the field. What is the most awkward? You think it is natural for a 320-pound-kid to back up and block? They want to come off and we teach them that. It has become more difficult. When you evaluate hog mollies, you have to be patient. You have to take your time. You look for the things that all the great ones can do. You have to look at all the basics. Does he play with a base? Can he roll his hips? Can he do this? Can he do that? You will find guys in the two-point that can do that.
Q: Can you see that here? In the drills here?
A: A little bit. It is helpful, but it is really with the pads on. You need the pads.
Q: How much are you open for business at two? Would you deem it a buyer's market or a seller's market with all these teams?
A: There is so much stuff going around. Are we open for business? Any decision I make is going to be in the best interest of the New York Giants, plain and simple. If someone makes me an offer I can't refuse, would I move back? It depends upon who is there. Again, if there is a guy that is worthy enough of being the second pick of a draft and what we are basically saying if we answer that question to the affirmative, you are drafting what you think is going to be a Hall of Fame player. You can't get too cute about the whole thing.
Q: What would be your understanding level if Odell would to take the position of wanting a deal done without participating in any activity from the standpoint of having gotten injured last year and really being even more concerned about that?
A: Let me say this to you, I do not talk about contracts or negotiations. I believe it is personal between the club and the player. I'm not going to speculate. Just see what happens, that is all.
Q: When you evaluated your offensive line, just watching the tape from last year. Justin Pugh, D.J. Fluker, at center. What did you see? What did you Like? Do you still believe it needs total revamping?
A: You have to be practical and you have to be realistic. When I watched the offensive line, they had a ton of injuries. The group that finished the season against Washington, what I really liked was that they played tough. They were physical and they got after it. They did a really nice job. I said in my opening presser that I'm not going to lie to anyone, give me a break. We are going to do it piece by piece. If the right guy is there, we will make a move.
Q: How do you view Justin Pugh?
A: He's a versatile, smart football player. Really, he is a four-hole guy. We are still in our evaluation process and we are going to figure it out.
Q: Do you come here with a pecking order at No. 2 in your mind?
A: We had our meetings in February. We went through the first time. Now, we are gathering information. We get to the draft in April. We will add all the new information and then we have this crazy thing called a discussion. Pat is involved, obviously, very involved in the draft. At the end of the day, I believe in collaboration. I believe in communication. Everyone in that room is going to say their piece. Then, it falls on me to make a decision. I have no preconceived notion. I just don't.
Q: Where do you stand on Eli Apple?
A: We had a nice visit. Eli came in and we talked for about 25 minutes. It was a good visit. We broke bread, so to speak. I told him it is clean. Let's go. That's where we are at.
Q: Do you expect him to be on the roster next year?
A: I expect him to show up April 9th. I hope he shows up April 9th.
Q: How did this all come together? You ending up here from Carolina?
A: I think you need to check. I said it publicly. Anytime that something like that happens, we are all complicit. I have to step back and be honest. I have a great wife that helps me do that. Joanne does not pull any punches. You have to understand that when there is a difference of opinion between people, you have all had arguments, if you have a difference of opinion, somewhere in the middle it should be. It is (Jerry Richardson's) franchise. He made a decision and here I am.
Q: What are your thoughts on Janoris Jenkins, his consistency level and work ethic?
A: We can all be more consistent. Everyone in our daily lives. Janoris is a very good football player. It is like I said to you guys. Every time you write an article, are you writing a Pulitzer Prize winner? No. Every decision that I make, is it the right one? No. At the end of the day, we all try and get better. Janoris is a very talented and gifted player. I got to know him a little bit and I am excited he is a New York Football Giant.
Q: Assessment of Sean McDermott and Brandon Beane as a tandem in Buffalo?
A: You are going to make me say nice things. I think it is a great group. Brandon has really grown up and he is ready. I think the fact that they have a personal relationship is helpful. I think they are going to be a great team. He is bright, tough and thoughtful. He went through the process with us of talking, collaborating and communicating. He has that piece down well. I think they are going to be a great team.