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Thursday, April 17, 2014
Analyzing Kiper Mock 4.0: Giants

By Dan Graziano
ESPN.com

A 7-9 record in 2013 earned the New York Giants the No. 12 pick in next month's NFL draft. After an offseason that has seen them sign 15 outside free agents, they still have needs at tight end, wide receiver and on the offensive line, one of which could reasonably be addressed with that pick. It also wouldn't be out of character to see them add a defensive lineman if that's who they felt the best player was at No. 12.

ESPN draft analyst Mel Kiper's latest mock draft is up today here on ESPN.com. It's two rounds long this time, and you have to have Insider access to read it. His picks for the Giants are aimed at finding some help for quarterback Eli Manning.

With the No. 12 pick in the first round, Kiper has the Giants taking North Carolina tight end Eric Ebron as "a potential difference-maker for the next stage of Eli Manning's career, a big target in the passing game who can create constant matchup problems with his size and quickness underneath." As Kiper points out, the Giants have had a revolving door at tight end for the past few years, and it's likely time to address the position in a more substantive way. The best tight end on the Giants' roster right now is either veteran blocking tight end Kellen Davis or the untested Adrien Robinson, making it one of the most glaring remaining holes on their roster. If Ebron is everything he's cracked up to be as a matchup-busting player at the position, he makes a lot of sense at No. 12.

With their second-round pick (No. 43 overall), Mel has the Giants taking UCLA guard Xavier Su'a-Filo. Those of us who cover the team likely wouldn't be thrilled about having to write that name all the time, but it would be hard to question the wisdom of the Giants addressing the guard position early in this draft. They signed Geoff Schwartz early in free agency to start at left guard, but they're still hoping Chris Snee can come through at right guard following multiple hip surgeries, and John Jerry is the backup plan in case he can't. Neither of those guys is a long-term solution, so an interior offensive lineman in the second round would make sense for 2014 and beyond.