Sports

Jets, Giants focus in trenches with first picks

If you need an edge rusher, you’re good. If you need a wide receiver, you’re good. If you need an offensive tackle, you’re good if you’re picking high. If you need a quarterback, you’re screwed.

If you’re Joe Schoen and Joe Douglas, this is your time to bring the Giants and Jets, respectively, back to relevance. Eight teams own a pair of first-round picks, and the Giants and Jets are two of them. And the only two with a pair in the top 10… barring a trade down.

Douglas also possesses the 35th and 38th picks, so this is his best chance to close the rather large gap on the rest of the division, starting with the Josh Allen Bills. Rookie Schoen needs two impact players, one of which better be an offensive tackle or John Mara wo n’t like reading his emails from him.

The Serby Mock 4.0 goes 1-25, with Mock 5.0 to forecast the entire first round on Draft Day:

1. Jacksonville Jaguars

Travon Walker, DE/OLB, Ga.

If GM Trent Baalke favors upside, this will be the choice over Aidan Hutchinson as The Other Josh Allen’s partner in crime. I ca n’t stop watching his 6.89 Combine three-cone from him. Who can?

2.Detroit Lions

Aidan Hutchinson, DE/OLB, Michigan

Coach Dan Campbell needs a QB of the future, but a relentless local boy who makes good rushing the passer and helping change the culture is difficult to pass up.

3. Houston Texans

Evan Neal, OT, Alabama

A mountainous bookend for LT Laremy Tunsil if O-line coach George Warhop appreciates Tytus Howard on the interior. Or a mountainous bodyguard for Davis Mills.

4.New York Jets

Jermaine Johnson II, DE/OLB, Florida State

A source who reluctantly admits he is not close to GM Joe Douglas divulges he has no idea whether Kayvon Thibodeaux agreed to his visit to Florham Park. But Robert Saleh could use a prototypical 6-foot-5, 254-pound predator who can help Carl Lawson rush the passer and set the edge as well. And oh, by the way, a team captain to boot.

Jermaine Johnson
Jermaine Johnson
AP

5.New York Giants

Ikem “Ickey” Ekwonu, OT, NC State

Daniel Jones and Saquon Barkley would pick up this kneecap-biter in a limo if GM Joe Schoen gets LT Andrew Thomas a bookend. See? Offensive lines can be fixed, after all.

Ikem Ekwonu
Ikem Ekwonu
AP

6. Carolina Panthers

Kayvon Thibodeaux, DE/OLB, Oregon

Sam Darnold pinky-swears he’s the best man for the job, and even though owner David Tepper and coach Matt Rhule don’t buy it, they pass on a quarterback because Haason Reddick has taken his 11 sacks to Philadelphia and Brian Burns will need a bookend pass rusher.

7.New York Giants

Ahmad “Sauce” Gardner, BC, Cincinnati

Schoen considers a trade with the Seahawks and Saints, who would be thinking about leapfrogging Atlanta for a QB, but why not grab the draft’s best corner and self-proclaimed best player in the draft?

Ahmed Gardner
Ahmed Gardner
AP

8. Atlanta Falcons

Malik Willis, QB, Liberty

Owner Arthur Smith isn’t on the hot seat, but Matt Ryan is in Indianapolis, so it’s time for his QB of the future who can learn behind bridge QB Marcus Mariota.

9.Seattle Seahawks

Charles Cross, OT, Mississippi State

Coach Pete Carroll secures an elite pass-blocking franchise LT for Drew Lock this season and for the quarterback he starts next year.

10.New York Jets

Drake London, WR, USC

The former basketball player provides Zach Wilson with a 6-foot-5, 210-pound plus target and complement to Elijah Moore. “Drake London,” ESPN’s Dan Orlovsky tweeted, “is Keyshawn Johnson.” Would that mean Moore is Wayne Chrebet?

Drake London
Drake London
AP

11.Washington Commanders

Derek Stingley Jr., CB, LSU

The Lisfranc injury is no longer a problem, and coach Ron Rivera should jump at the chance to intercept a stud who can match up with the likes of CeeDee Lamb, DeVonta Smith and Kenny Golladay.

12.Minnesota Vikings

Kyle Hamilton, S, Notre Dame

The classic Best Player Available to team with Harrison Smith and give Aaron Rodgers pause.

13. Houston Texans

Garrett Wilson, WR, Ohio State

A much-needed weapon alongside Brandin Cooks for second-year QB Davis Mills.

14.Baltimore Ravens

George Karlaftis, DE/OLB, Purdue

Tyus Bowser returns from a torn Achilles and new defensive coordinator Mike Macdonald could use a potential double-digit sacker.

15.Philadelphia Eagles

Jameson Williams WR, Alabama

Roll Tide one more time with a blazer who will make Eagles fans forget Jalen Reagor, once Williams recovers fully from his torn ACL, perhaps by midseason. Fly, Eagle, fly.

16.New Orleans Saints

Jordan Davis, DT, Georgia

Mouths were agape at the Combine because a 6-foot-6, 341-pound man isn’t supposed to move the way he did.

17. Los Angeles Chargers

Trevor Penning, OT, Northern Iowa

LT Rashawn Slater, last year’s first-rounder, was a godsend, but when Justin Herbert is your franchise crown jewel, a belligerent second godsend on the opposite side is wise.

18.Philadelphia Eagles

Trent McDuffie, BC, Washington

He’s 5-foot-11 but plays bigger. Steven Nelson flew the coop and Darius Slay is 31.

19.New Orleans Saints

Chris Olave, WR, Ohio State

A replacement for LT Terron Armstead must be found, but a deep threat for Jameis Winston and complement for Michael Thomas makes sense too.

20.Pittsburgh Steelers

Kenny Pickett, QB, Pittsburgh

If you don’t have a franchise quarterback, hope on Mitch Trubisky is not a strategy, and wouldn’t keeping the kid with the small hands home be a neat little story?

21.New England Patriots

Devin Lloyd, LB, Utah

Bill Belichick, with Dont’a Hightower and Jamie Collins seemingly out of the picture, infuses much-needed youth with a versatile, complete three-down playmaker.

22. Green Bay Packers

Treylon Burks, WR, Arkansas

Not the blazer that Aaron Rodgers and coach Matt LaFleur need and want, but somebody has to replace Davante Adams and Marquez Valdes-Scantling, so a big, 6-foot-2, 225-pound target who could remind cheeseheads of Deebo Samuel Lite will do.

23.Arizona Cardinals

Devonte Wyatt, DT, Georgia

A pass rusher is needed, with Chandler Jones in Las Vegas and JJ Watt now 33, but this versatile thoroughbred can replace Corey Peters and shield LBs Isaiah Simmons and Zaven Collins, the previous two first-round picks.

24. Dallas Cowboys

Zion Johnson, G, Boston College

A plug-and-play bookend for Zack Martin is needed to aid Ezekiel Elliott, because Connor Williams left for Miami.

25. Buffalo Bills

Kaiir Elam, BC, Florida

Tre’Davious White is expected back for training camp, but that doesn’t mean Batman doesn’t need a 6-foot-1 Robin with appealing length.

.

Related Articles

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

Back to top button