With the 19th pick of the Blogging the bEast mock draft, the New York Giants select DJ Fluker, OT, Alabama

The book on Giants GM Jerry Reese is that he drafts for value. That may be true, but a historical look at his drafts would say that Reese loves drafting cornerbacks. Here are a list of corners the Giants have drafted in the first 3 rounds since 2005:

  • Jayron Hosley: 3rd round, 2012.
  • Prince Amukamara: 1st round, 2011.
  • Terrell Thomas: 2nd round, 2008.
  • Aaron Ross: 1st round, 2007.
  • Corey Webster: 2nd round, 2005 (Reese was not yet GM for this pick. He was director of player personnel).

The Giants also took a safety (Kenny Phillips) in the 1st round in 2008.

There’s an argument to be made that the Giants could draft another corner high in 2013. Prince Amukamara looks like he may be developing into a good pro and Jayron Hosley could be a nice slot corner in time, but Corey Webster was terrible in 2012 and Terrell Thomas can longer be counted on as a viable player with his long injury history. Meanwhile, Aaron Ross re-signed with the Giants, but only for a veteran minimum deal, which means he’ll be competing just to make the team.

If Dee Milliner somehow slides this far, or if DJ Hayden or Xavier Rhodes are still on the board, they could be targets, as could Desmond Trufant.

However, with DJ Fluker still sitting there, he would simply be too good to pass up. Fluker is one of the most enormous humans I have ever seen in person, and his 36 3/4″ arms are about as long as they come. He’s only going to be a RT in the NFL (or maybe a guard), which hurts his value some.

The 2008 Giants used to get a lead on you, and then just bludgeon you to death with the run game. In those days, Chris Snee and Kareem McKenzie were at the top of their games. The Giants have always been a right-handed running team, until last year:

Giants run game

The Giants haven’t had good RT play since McKenzie’s decline began. Fluker could come in on Day 1 and significantly upgrade the running game on that right side.

Also, just on a side note, if you look at the Top 100 high school prospects lists on Rivals.com over the last 10 years, there are a boatload of current/former Giants and Eagles that appear on these lists. It could be that the Giants and Eagles put more stock than other teams in what players accomplished as far back as high school, or it could just be a complete and total coincidence. Here are some recent/current Giants who were once bigtime high school recruits:

Giants Rivals Top 100

DJ Fluker was the #3 overall high school prospect in 2009.

Previous picks:

1. Chiefs: Luke Joeckel, OT, Texas A&M

2. Jaguars: Eric Fisher, OT, Central Michigan

3. Raiders: Sharrif Floyd, DT, Florida

4. Eagles: Dion Jordan, OLB, Oregon

5. Lions: Lane Johnson, OT, Oklahoma

6. Browns: Geno Smith, QB, West Virginia

7. Cardinals: Star Lotulelei, DT, Utah

8. Bills: Ziggy Ansah, DE, BYU

9. Jets: Barkevious Mingo, OLB, LSU

10. Titans: Chance Warmack, OG, Alabama

11. Chargers: Dee Milliner, CB, Alabama

12. Dolphins: DJ Hayden, CB, Houston

13. Jets: Xavier Rhodes, CB, Florida St.

14. Panthers: Sheldon Richardson, DT, Missouri

15. Saints: Kenny Vaccaro, S, Texas

16. Rams: Tavon Austin, WR, West Virginia

17. Steelers: Jarvis Jones, OLB, Steelers

18. Cowboys: Jonathan Cooper, OG, North Carolina

9 Comments

  1. R.G.Mbohapy says:

    Looks like Josh LeRibeus might finally have some competition for sexiest man in football.

  2. Invictus XI says:

    I’m not a fan of this selection.

    Fluker significantly upgrades the running game, no doubt. But his pass protection can be termed inconsistent at best, and atrocious at worst. The line would still hemorrhage pressure from that side, and I think pass protection a huge factor.

    Fluker, I do think, could be a better guard than either Warmack or Cooper. His length and drive in a phonebooth would be dominant. He also wouldn’t have to go laterally, only forward, which plays to his strengths.

    But guards don’t win you that many games, and though I wouldn’t be too upset with Fluker, Warmack, or Cooper, I’d be disappointed. I do think positional value matters to Jerry Reese.

    Using overthecap.com, looking up the positions that have contracts that average 12+ mill/year, you see they are:

    QB, LT (not RT), RB, WR, CB, Passrusher. Most expensive positions.

    In Jerry Reese’s tenure as GM, what have his 1st round picks been? CB, S, WR, DE, CB, RB.

    I don’t think that’s a simple coincidence.

    Given that the Giants will be cap strapped (and even though they’ve got space next year, it’ll fill up quickly with guys they need to re-sign), it only makes sense to add talent that plays an expensive position on a cheap rookie deal for the next 5 years.

    Fluker has versatility, which is his main grace. Can play along the line (minus C or LT), and that makes him a possiblity, but I just see his positional value and his pass protection as issues which lead me to not want him.

    That isn’t even mentioning that the Giants have two players in the pipeline for the position, James Brewer and Brandon Mosley, and that the offensive line depth in this draft is quite good.

    If I were to pick a player, I’d go for Tank Carradine. He’s already shown to have unnatural healing abilities. He was a productive player, that has ideal NY Giant length at 6’4 276 lbs and 34 and 5/8″ arms. Explosive off the snap, powerful, and with exceptional balance.

    Mathias Kiwanuka is 30+ and coming off an awful season. Adrian Tracy and Adewale Ojomo are unknowns and Tracy is a free agent after this year. Justin Tuck is coming off two seasons in which he has totaled 9.5 sacks. On top of that, he will be a free agent. Osi Umenyiora is already gone.

    That’s a massive amount of uncertainty. And given that the Giants’ defense is predicated mostly on rushing four with no blitz, pass rusher is not a financially premium position, but a schematically important position as well (moreso for the Giants than say, the Bucs or the Cowboys with their focus on the secondary).

    The defense ranked 31st overall last season. There are clear issues there. The offensive line, while aging, have players in the pipeline, has more depth throughout the draft, and while not great last year, wasn’t as awful as someone like the Cowboys. They allowed the fewest sacks in the league and ranked 12th in the league in rushing (5th in rushing TDs).

    1. All good points, but at the the core I think we just differ on how good Fluker is, and that’s what makes the draft great.

      1. Invictus XI says:

        Seems like it. I really liked Cordy Glenn last year, who was similar to Fluker (Fluker has the edge when it comes to run blocking), except Glenn’s footwork was eons better, at least to me. And he went in the 2nd round.

        In any case, didn’t want to just leave it at “not a fan,” and run, figured I’d needed to explain myself haha

    2. NYG_Slater says:

      In a vacuum, I agree with everything you just said.

      I love positional value. I love getting top tier prospects at premium positions for rookie contracts.

      If you had to min-max cost benefits, this idea, in conjunction with trading back and getting 2-for-1, is how you build a winning sustainable franchise. (assuming you have a QB)

      But, I’m not going to be upset if they take fluker. He’s a good prospect. It’s still a developmental league, they can work with him on pass protection technique. More importantly, a fluker selection lets the Giants play like giants. For better or worse, gilbride isn’t going to stop calling those damn 3rd and short draws out of shotgun, or the 2nd and long runs up the middle. Maybe with fluker, those plays work. Moreover, you get a guy like fluker, you enhance david wilson’s effectiveness. Considering wilson should be a cornerstone player on our offense, I’ll be okay with a fluker selection.

  3. NYG_Slater says:

    I like fluker over any of the guards. Not saying fluker is better than cooper, but i think fluker will have an opportunity to help his team win more games as a pro.

    Overall, I have been beginning to warm up to fluker as a giants selection. So much of pass protection is scheme, playing as a cohesive unit, having a QB that gets the ball out quick, and has good pocket/situational awareness. I think the giants could be a good fit for him.

    Also, he carries his weight shockingly well, clearly he is a rare athlete. In time, you’d expect him to be an adequate pass blocking RT, while an absolute elite mauler in the run game.

    I’d still like to see Ogletree at 19 and hope brewer can provide something as a RT, but if they have internal concerns about brewer, I’d see why they’d draft fluker.

  4. brisulph says:

    Not a fan of this pick… I have some doubts that he can pass protect well enough for a team that like to chuck it.

    1. Ha, yeah, that seems to be the consensus on Twitter, too. (The not liking the pick part).

      Great chance he doesn’t even make it 19. I’m a big fan. Understand why others aren’t.

      1. brisulph says:

        His footwork has been pointed out repeatedly as a big time concern… and without an improvement, his likelihood of staying at RT is quite diminished. I think this is why he projects as a G for most people.

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