Thursday, April 28, 2011
Rapid Reaction: Giants pick Prince at 19
By Ohm Youngmisuk
Giants general manager Jerry Reese said he would go for the best player available on his board. All indications were the Giants were going to go for an offensive tackle, but when Prince Amukamara dropped to No. 19, the Giants snatched him up. The Giants are getting the second-best cornerback in this draft. They did pass on Alabama running back Mark Ingram and Boston College offensive tackle Anthony Castonzo. But it's hard to argue with this pick.
THE 411: Amukamara is the second-best cornerback in this draft, and he dropped after some people had him pegged as a top-10 pick. Some have said his arms aren't as long as teams would like them to be, but he and LSU's Patrick Peterson are the two best corners in the draft.
Other concerns include how his production dropped a bit from his junior to his senior season. Amukamara had five interceptions his junior year but none during his senior year. That may have something to do with the departure of Ndamukong Suh. He also could have fallen to No. 19 because of the run on quarterbacks early.
HOW HE FITS IN: Amukamara will come in and be in the secondary mix right away according to Reese. Can he compete with Aaron Ross for the third corner spot? The Giants have Corey Webster and Terrell Thomas as their top two corners, but are thin after Ross. They can use depth and talent there. Defensive coordinator Perry Fewell has to like this pick. Amukamara gives them more speed in the secondary, and the Giants say he will contribute on special teams, possibly as a gunner.
WHAT THEY'RE SAYING: "We're really surprised that he was there," Reese said. "We thought he would be taken a lot higher than that. There were some concerns about his production on the ball this past season because he had more production on the ball the year before. We think he can still play the ball really well and he's a spectacular, physical player."
"It's a value and a need pick as well," Reese added. "He will be in the mix in our secondary. It's always a concern [that he dropped off] but we go off our talent scouts. We thought he was a terrific player and we never dreamed that he would be there [at No. 19]."
"The value of this pick and where he was ranked, there wasn't any question about the fact that this player should be on the New York Giants," coach Tom Coughlin said. "At one point there were four or five players in position there where we felt real good about it and as our pick matured there was Prince and he was clearly the highest-rated player on the board."
"You can never have enough cover guys," Coughlin added. "If you watch the way people play today with the addition of receivers ... the more cover people that you have the better off you are going to be. Plus this young man is physical, he's fast, has very good size, he's confident which you have to be [in order] to be a corner in this league."