The New York Giants finished last in the NFC East in 2018 with a 5-11 record. They ranked 16th in scoring at 23.1 points per game, but were 23rd in points allowed at 25.8 points per game. With Odell Beckham Jr traded to the Browns for two first round picks and a third round pick, the Giants had ample opportunity to bolster other areas of needs. How did they fare? We'll examine the top four selections for the Giants in this year's NFL Draft.
Round 1: 6th, Daniel Jones - QB (Duke)
Much out of the same mold as current Giant signal caller Eli Manning in terms of size, Jones started as a redshirt freshman, earning team MVP. He completed nearly 64 percent of his passes for 2836 for 16 touchdowns and nine interceptions. He added nearly 500 yards on the ground. His performance tailed off a little as a sophomore, completing 57 percent for nearly 2700 yards, 14 touchdowns and 11 interceptions while adding 518 yards on the ground. As a senior last season, Jones had a personal best 22 touchdown passes, completing 61 percent of his passes.
Jones displays solid fundamentals, intelligence, accuracy and enough arm strength to make throws at the NFL level. He has enough mobility to buy time in the pocket to find open receivers. Jones was brought in to be Manning's replacement and will likely sit much of this rookie season. He isn't a franchise type quarterback, but more likely one who can efficiently move an offense, particularly with Saquon Barkley in the backfield. With a solid running game and defense behind him, Jones could one day be an effective NFL starter, but don't ask him to carry a team.
Round 1: 17th, Dexter Lawrence -DT (Clemson)
Lawrence made an immediate impact in college as a freshman, earning second-team All-SEC honors with 79 tackles, seven sacks and two blocked kicks. Lawrence actually played less as a sophomore and his numbers suffered as a result, but was still recognized with a first-team All-SEC selection. Last season, Lawrence registered 7.5 tackles for loss of yardage and 44 tackles overall, but missed two games after testing positive for a performance-enhancing drug.
The pick is a curious one for the team due to the fact that the past two seasons the Giants have gone in this direction with players who are contributing. Lawrence has power to play across from the center to plug the middle of the line. He didn't progress in college as many anticipated after his dynamic freshman year. It will be interesting to see how the Giants use Lawrence along with B.J. Hill and Dalvin Tomlinson. Most likely Lawrence will be used as a run stopper on short yardage situations.
Round 1: 30th, Deandre Baker - CB (Georgia)
Baker appeared in 11 games as a freshman with only one tackle, improving his play to 31 tackles, two interceptions and five passes broken up as a sophomore. He was named to the second-team All-SEC as a junior, recording 44 tackles and intercepting three passes. Thriving as a senior in 2018, Baker was first-team All-SEC and first-team AP All-American after breaking up 10 passes and recording 40 tackles.
This was an excellent choice by the Giants to address a need in the secondary. The Giants other options were last year's back up Tony Lippett and Sam Beal, who missed all last season with an injury. Baker has displayed good quickness and enough intelligence and speed to stay with receivers in man coverage. One area of concern is matching up with bigger, more physical receivers. However, the Giants believe that Baker's overall skills at attacking the ball and technique will counter his relative lack of size.
Round 3: 95th, Oshane Ximines- DE (Old Dominion)
Ximines was a star on defense for Old Dominion from the outset, recording five sacks and 7.5 tackles for loss as a freshman. As a sophomore in 2016, Ximines increased his production to 11.5 tackles for loss and 7.5 sacks, to go along with three forced fumbles. Named to the first team all-conference as a junior with 8.5 sacks and four forced fumbles, Ximines exploded as a senior. He was among the top players in FBS in sacks with 12 and tackles for loss with 18.5.
Needing to improve as a run stopper, Ximines has all the tools and technique as a pass rusher to succeed as an end rusher. He has the versatility to play in either the 3-4 or 4-3 packages and has a good chance of being an eventual starter and solid NFL contributor.