Entering their 100th season, the New York Giants find themselves at a pivotal point in the franchise’s history. Since Tom Coughlin was let go at the end of the 2015 season, the Giants have fired two general managers and three head coaches. The Joe Schoen and Brian Daboll era began on a positive note in 2022, but the team quickly fell back to one of the NFL’s worst in 2023. Two drafts (including two top-7 picks) and free agent signing periods have not have not had the desired impact. The decision to re-sign Daniel Jones now looks like a colossal mistake. The coaching staff has already been revamped with two coordinators fired (11 new coaches overall).

The Giants were active in free agency. They let two high-priced assets depart in Saquon Barkley and Xavier McKinney. The freed resources were used to trade/sign edge rusher Brian Burns and address the offensive line. To date, 14 free agents have been signed, including seven blockers (five offensive linemen, two tight ends).

But on paper, the Giants find themselves with holes all over the roster, including starting quarterback, a #1 wide receiver, a #2 cornerback, pass-rushing defensive tackle, and other spots. Yet they find themselves with only six picks. The team will not be able to address all of their issues in this draft. And the pressure is on to make every single pick count.


If a team does not have a top-six quarterback in its conference, it is virtually impossible for that team to be a consistent playoff and Super Bowl contender. Regardless of the reasons, the Daniel Jones era was a failure. But it’s not clear if the franchise has come to terms with that reality. At least part of the fallout since 2019 has been the termination of one general manager and two head coaches. The decision to re-sign Jones to a 4-year, $160 million contract may ultimately cost Schoen and Daboll their jobs as well.

The franchise has heavily scouted all of the quarterbacks in the upcoming draft. If they are truly serious about moving on from Jones, there is hope. But until the team actually acquires a viable prospect, fans know the team will be barely treading water.

The problem for the Giants is they won one or two too many games in 2023. It is assumed the top three quarterbacks will go 1-2-3 at the start of the draft. And there is a chance that the fourth quarterback may also go before New York’s #6 spot. The Giants are reportedly trying to trade up, which makes sense if they are convinced one of these four can become a top-6 quarterback in the NFC. However, even if they are successful, the cost could sabotage the ability to improve the rest of the roster in 2024 and 2025.

The other issue is the 5th- and 6th best quarterbacks will likely be off the board before New York’s next pick in round two (#47 overall). Do the Giants therefore trade down from #6 and “reach” for “lesser” players who are going later for a reason? Or should they try a Hail Mary on a late round flier? Or is just better to punt on quarterback until 2025, even though there is no guarantee they will be in a better position? Now you know why they call it “quarterback hell.”

The most realistic options appear to be Drake Maye or J.J. McCarthy. One will likely go third overall. The other could go fourth or fifth overall. A costly trade up may be the only option. Also keep in mind that both Maye and McCarthy would be best served not being thrown to the wolves as rookies.

Nevertheless, Schoen and Daboll need to get their quarterback either this year, or next at the latest. Beyond that, they may want to put their homes up on the market.

Wide Receiver

The cupboard is not bare here. Schoen and Daboll have already invested 2nd- and 3rd-round picks at the position and both Jalin Hyatt and Wan’Dale Robinson have flashed promising ability. Darius Slayton is also a solid contributor. Isaiah McKenzie and Isaiah Hodgins should press for roster spots.

What’s missing is a true #1 wide receiver who scares the opposition. This missing piece takes on greater significance with the departure of Saquon Barkley as right now, there are no players on offense who other teams really need to game plan against. Adding a player like Marvin Harrison, Jr., Malik Nabers, or Rome Odunze could transform this entire unit, and have a multiplier effect with respect to Hyatt and Robinson.

The good news? The Giants will definitely have a shot at one of the top receivers. The bad news is they won’t if they acquire the quarterback. Quarterback is the more important position, but it will cost more and there is less guarantee than picking the highly-rated wide receiver. Decisions, decisions.

Defensive Tackle

The Giants arguably have the game’s best defensive tackle in Dexter Lawrence. They also have have four other players who could be a factor in Rakeem Nunez-Roches, Jordan Phillips, Jordon Riley, and D.J. Davidison. But those guys are more run stuffers. The glaring omission inside is pass-rushing, 3-technique defensive tackle. New Defensive Coordinator Shane Bowen relies on his front four to generate pressure. Do not be surprised to see the Giants take a defensive tackle high. It could make a world of difference to the entire defense. As a matter of fact, if the Giants traded down in the first round, I could see defensive tackle be a very early pick.


Bowen likes to play it safer in the secondary, but both outside corner and nickel corner remain areas where the Giants could use an upgrade. Tae Banks is clearly the #1 corner on this team. The current candidates to start opposite of him include Nick McCloud, Tre Hawkins, and possibly Aaron Robinson. Inside, Cor’Dale Flott and Darnay Holmes will likely continue to compete for the nickel spot (Robinson could come into play here if he is past his injury issues). If the Giants trade down in round one, they could take a cornerback with their first pick such as Quinyon Mitchell or Terrion Arnold.


Xavier McKinney is gone, leaving Jason Pinnock, Dane Belton, Jalen Mills, and Gervarrius Owens as the main contenders. Bowen tends to use a lot of double-high and split-safety packages so physical safeties with range who will tackle will be desired. Giants could also add a veteran here after the draft.

With respect to both the cornerback and safety positions, Bowen’s defenses have heavily employed nickel and dime packages, meaning there will be more of an emphasis on defensive backs than linebackers in this defense.

Tight End

Darren Waller seems to be on the verge of retiring. If he does, the team lacks a receiving threat at the position unless you think Lawrence Cager is about to take a major step forward. The Giants added two blocking tight ends in free agent. They need Daniel Bellinger to rebound from a disappointing sophomore season.

Running Back

For better or worse, the Saquon Barkley era is over. The Giants signed Devin Singletary in free agency but he is more of a complementary back. There seem to be a bunch of underrated running backs in this draft who should be available in rounds 2-4.

Offensive Line

You would be hard-pressed to find a team in the NFL who has spent more high-priced free agent and draft resources on the offensive line than the New York Giants in the past 10 years. And yet the results have been beyond abysmal. Multiple general managers, personnel officials, head coaches, offensive coordinators, and offensive line coaches have been fired for their inability to fix this problem. Schoen and Daboll have drafted four offensive linemen in two years, including in rounds 1, 2, 3, and 5. The team also signed Mark Glowinski in free agency in 2022. All five players have disappointed and Glowinski has already been let go.

This offseason, rather than fix the position in the draft, the team signed five veteran free agents. Two of the five will likely start. The other three will compete for back-up spots where depth should be drastically improved. But pressure will be on new offensive line coach Carmen Bricillo to get Evan Neal, John Michael Schmitz, and Josh Ezeudu to play up to their lofty draft statuses.

Still, there is always room for more quality. Indeed, if the Giants trade down, taking an offensive linemen in the first round is not out of the question. It certainly is on the table in any of the later rounds.


No one is going to be happy after this draft is over. There are too many needs and not enough draft picks. If the Giants address the all-important quarterback position, this issue is going to be even more exacerbated as the precious draft capital will likely be needed for the trade up. On the other hand, if the Giants address the glaring absence of a #1 receiver, the team will likely be punting on a QB until 2025.

Because of the state of the roster, trading down has to be on the table. If some team were to offer the Giants a great deal for their #6 pick, Schoen should listen.

Header Image © USA TODAY Sports