Kiper gives Giants' draft a 'B'

May, 11, 2014
May 11
1:00
PM ET
Mel Kiper Jr.'s initial grades for the 2014 NFL draft are up, and he gives the New York Giants a "B." Mel gave eight teams a B-plus or better (three B-pluses, three A-minuses and two As) and eight teams other than the Giants a B, so it's a middle-of-the-road grade for what I would consider a middle-of-the-road draft.

Mel likes the second-round pick of center Weston Richburg the best, and I agree with him. He thinks first-rounder Odell Beckham Jr. "has a chance to be a really dynamic NFL player," which he'd better be, or else this draft will be graded quite poorly in years to come. And he thinks third-rounder Jay Bromley was a reach, which even Bromley thought he was.

But as we discussed throughout Friday and Saturday, after the first round, the Giants weren't trying to do anything very interesting here. They were looking in the middle and late rounds for safe, comfortable players about whose character and makeup they felt very good. They're tired of taking chances on projects and injury bargains that don't work out. And the state of their roster requires them to try and find players who can make at least some contribution right away -- whose NFL learning curve might be on the quicker side.

So the Giants' draft is loaded up with team captains who got good grades and who aren't going to need a lot of hand-holding in order to figure out what's being said in the meeting rooms and apply it on the field. The questions about the players the Giants drafted this year are questions of ceiling -- i.e. how good they can eventually be. We're not going to know that for a while, but it doesn't seem as though that was a major driving force behind any of these picks after the first or maybe the second round.

Dan Graziano

ESPN New York Giants reporter

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