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Thursday, April 10, 2014
Analyzing McShay mock 4.0: Giants

By Dan Graziano
ESPN.com

The New York Giants hold the No. 12 pick in the first round of this year's NFL draft after their 7-9 season in 2013. Even after signing 14 outside free agents and re-signing 10 of their own, the Giants have a variety of specific needs and an overall need to improve the quality of the depth of their roster. You could reasonably make a case for them to draft an offensive lineman, a defensive lineman, a wide receiver or even a tight end with that first pick.

Todd McShay's fourth mock draft of 2014 is out today. It's an Insider post, but it stretches two rounds. His choice for the Giants in the first may not be the exciting pick for which Giants fans are hoping.

With the No. 12 overall pick, Todd has the Giants taking Michigan tackle Taylor Lewan. I fully endorse the idea of picking the best available lineman at this spot, whether it's an offensive lineman or a defensive lineman. If they like Lewan, he makes sense because he allows them the flexibility to play around with current tackles Will Beatty and Justin Pugh, depending on how they perform or where they fit. If they like Notre Dame's Zack Martin, who's still on the board in this mock, because of his versatility and ability to play multiple positions on the line, that makes sense too. They need better overall talent on the line than they have, and they can sort out positions as time goes along. Having too many quality linemen would be a nice problem for the Giants after last season.

I also could endorse a pick of Pitt defensive tackle Aaron Donald, who's still on the board here. They are counting on 2013 second-rounder Johnathan Hankins stepping up as a starter to replace Linval Joseph, but every team needs depth and a strong rotation at defensive tackle.

It should also be noted that North Carolina tight end Eric Ebron (to the Bills at No. 9) and Texas A&M wide receiver Mike Evans (to the Buccaneers at No. 7) are gone by No. 12 in Todd's mock, which is the answer to your questions about why he didn't give the Giants either of those players.

In the second round, Todd has the Giants taking Ohio State linebacker Ryan Shazier, which makes sense but for the Giants' historic tendency to devalue the linebacker position. Shazier projects as a three-down linebacker who could start right away on the weak side, but my guess is it's more likely the Giants would take one of those next two tight ends -- Texas Tech's Jace Amaro or Washington's Austin Seferian-Jenkins -- if they're still there at No. 43, as they are in this mock.