With the 34th overall pick in the second round of the 2018 NFL Draft, the Giants drafted Will Hernandez out of University of Texas-El Paso. In school he played left guard in a primarily pro-style gap scheme that should make his transition to the NFL a lot easier when compared to players coming from a spread system.
Here’s what I saw from Hernandez at practice during spring OTA’s and minicamps: (Please keep in mind with no pads or contact permitted there is only so much you can see)
He did not look like a fish out of water. Occasionally you can see rookies looks out of place and overwhelmed by the size and speed of the players in line play at the NFL level. That didn’t look like the case for Hernandez.
Hernandez primarily played left tackle next to Nate Solder with Patrick Omameh at right guard. It is a good spot for him to play next to a veteran like Solder and smart centers like Brett Jones and Jon Halapio. Hernandez also got some snaps on the right side as well.
In drills with the coaches he showed the type of violence and strength with his hands during pad work.
I’m going to give you two quotes from Dave Gettleman and Pat Shurmur from when Hernandez was drafted and simply add that they have proven to be absolutely correct:
Gettleman: “He’s a little cranky. He is cranky.”
Shurmur: “It is kind of a good thing in our sport. A lot of parts in our culture that is not admired. Certainly in our sport it is something that we value. Cranky is good.”
Though I didn’t see him do it a ton, when Hernandez was asked to get out into space and block in front on some screen passes he looked more than mobile enough to do it. You could also see him sometimes get so excited to get out and block someone he would over-extend himself a bit. His discipline should improve here with more work.
In terms of his personality he reminds me a lot of Richie Seubert. He is a blue collar player on the field that likes to mix it up but a pleasure to deal with off the field. He is an excellent interview and I look forward to working with him during his rookie season.