NASHVILLE, Tenn. (CBSNewYork/AP) – The Giants ended a mini-run of D-linemen at the NFL Draft and, more importantly, signaled the changing of the guard for their franchise.
New York took Duke quarterback Daniel Jones with the sixth-overall pick in the first round. Jones who has learned under Blue Devils coach David Cutcliffe — the same man who tutored Peyton and Eli Manning.
Eli Manning’s job status has been a hot-button issue inside and outside of the Giants locker room. Head coach Pat Shurmur has maintained that, regardless of the team drafting a quarterback, Manning will be the man under center entering the 2019 season.
Jones was considered an outsider to go in the opening round until recently, and the Giants clearly feel he can do some more learning under Eli Manning before taking over as their signal caller.
Jones was the MVP of the Senior Bowl. Fans in New York will now be waiting to see when Shurmur and Dave Gettleman feel the time is right for him to replace a two-time Super Bowl MVP.
After the shock at No. 6, Big Blue turned to glaring needs on defense by selecting Clemson tackle Dexter Lawrence with the 17th pick overall and Georgia cornerback Deandre Baker with a late trade with Seattle for the 30th selection overall.
The surprise was getting Baker, who won the Jim Thorpe Award winner as nation’s best defensive back last year. New York sent three picks to Seattle, a second rounder (No. 37), a fourth rounder (No. 132) and a fifth rounder (No. 142).
New York, which has won only eight games in the past two seasons, failed to address the desperate need for a pass rusher, electing to take Jones and passing on Kentucky linebacker Josh Allen, who had 17 sacks last season.
Lawrence is massive in the middle, much like Harrison, who New York traded to Detroit last season. While Lawrence was a force in the middle for the national champions, he is not a pass rusher.
He also has an item in his resume that might be a concern. Lawrence was suspended for last season’s College Football Playoff for failing an NCAA test for performance-enhancing drugs. He said at the time he had no idea why he failed the test and Clemson coach Dabo Swinney said in February that it’s possible the team could have unknowingly given him a supplement with the drug, though the school and NCAA were investigating.
Baker is steady, tough and disruptive but he left some potential turnovers on the field.
(© Copyright 2019 CBS Broadcasting Inc. All Rights Reserved. The Associated Press contributed to this report.)