NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — Rumors have swirled for some time saying the Giants aren’t necessarily going to pick a quarterback in the first round of the upcoming draft.
But according to the NFL Network’s Mike Garafolo, not only did Big Blue go out to dinner with arguably the best quarterback available on Tuesday night, they were spending most of Wednesday at his school watching him do his thing.
The quarterback in question is Dwayne Haskins.
Both Garafolo and the New York Post reported that the Giants sent several key members of their brain trust, including head coach Pat Shurmur, offensive coordinator Mike Shula and vice president of player personnel Chris Mara, to Columbus, Ohio, to dine with the talented quarterback and then take in his workout at the Woody Hayes Athletic Center.
Haskins and Heisman Trophy winner Kyler Murray are considered the two top quarterbacks available in the draft. Murray reportedly met with the Arizona Cardinals, the owners of the No. 1 pick, on Tuesday. The Giants currently pick sixth and 17th in the first round, but may need to move up into the top five to get Haskins, who set single-season Big Ten records by throwing for 4,831 yards and 50 touchdowns in 14 games as a sophomore in 2018.
Giants general manager Dave Gettleman has been under fire since trading superstar wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr. to the Cleveland Browns last week. Conventional wisdom suggested the move marked a full-blown tear-down of the organization, but Gettleman has insisted he plans on trying to win in 2019, which is part of the reason he held on to veteran quarterback Eli Manning, who is 38 years old and carries a $23.2 million salary cap.
“This narrative that Eli is overpaid and can’t play is a crock, I’m telling you,” Gettleman said, adding he doesn’t mind if people disagree with him.
In an interview on WFAN this week, Gettleman was asked if the Giants will have a young quarterback on the roster this season, to which he replied, “If all goes according to plan, probably.”
That doesn’t necessarily mean Haskins will be the guy the Giants pick in the first round on April 25, but it does indicate their intention to at least have an option behind Manning that could start in the immediate future. Other reports have suggested Gettleman could try to swing a deal with the Cardinals for Josh Rosen, who had a rocky rookie season after being selected 10th overall in last year’s draft.
Still, there’s a lot to like about Haskins, a 6-foot-3, 220-pounder who grew up in Highland Park, New Jersey, and is prepared to sit and learn during his rookie season, no matter which team he ends up with.
“New York, of course, would be a great spot for me,” Haskins said at the scouting combine last month in Indianapolis, where he wowed with his arm but disappointed with his 5.04-second time in the 40-yard dash. “I’m comfortable enough to be able to learn from someone that’s been there in front of me.”