Tuesday, April 23, 2013
Can Giants 'steak' claim to guard?
By Ohm Youngmisuk ESPNNewYork.com
The New York Giants certainly knew how to make Chance Warmack feel at home.
When the Alabama guard visited the organization recently, Giants offensive line coach Pat Flaherty took Warmack to Del Frisco's steak house -- one of the most popular restaurants in the city among NFL players.
Chance Warmack was a member of three national championship teams at Alabama.
The 6-foot-2, 317-pound Warmack ordered the prime porterhouse and lobster macaroni and cheese, among other dishes. Days later, Warmack still sounds like he's in heaven while reminiscing about the dinner.
"It was humongous," Warmack said of the porterhouse. "It was the size of my head. It was nice. Coach let me get whatever I wanted. We got a lot of food."
It's no wonder Warmack said his visit with the Giants "felt like home."
The Giants might be hoping on Thursday night that they will have a chance to make Warmack feel at home for the next few years. He is considered to be an elite prospect and perhaps one of the safest picks in the draft.
He has been projected to go where offensive guards don't go often -- as high as in the top 10, where he could be an option for the New York Jets at ninth overall. According to profootballreference.com, the last guard drafted in top 10 was Colorado's Chris Naeole at No. 10 in 1997.
This year, Warmack and fellow guard Jonathan Cooper of North Carolina could go in the top 10. If one is available at No. 19, GM Jerry Reese might have to consider doing something the Giants rarely do.
The Giants haven't used first-round picks on offensive linemen often in recent years. In fact, the franchise has selected just one offensive lineman in the first round since 1990 (Luke Petitgout in 1999).
So Reese could stick with the franchise's formula and draft an offensive lineman after the first round, but the Giants could use a young stud lineman to groom for the future.
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This season, the Giants' line appears set with the exception of right tackle, where David Diehl and James Brewer are expected to compete.
But in terms of the future, left guard Kevin Boothe and Diehl are playing on one-year contracts. Right guard Chris Snee and center David Baas both are 31 and underwent offseason surgeries. Reese is likely thinking about how his line will look in 2014 and beyond.
Certainly Warmack or Alabama teammate D.J. Fluker -- a 6-4, 339-pound tackle who also is a first-round prospect -- would look great on that line if one of them is there at No. 19 for Reese to choose.
"They play real physical football," Warmack said of the Giants. "Just like they did at Alabama, so I will fit right in. That organization won a Super Bowl not too long ago and they are trying to reach that again, and I would like to have the opportunity."
"D.J. is a very hard worker," he added of his Alabama teammate. "Whatever organization he goes to, he is going to help. He picks everybody else up. I feel like he is the type of player that can carry five guys around and [motivate] them to do good in whatever they do."
NFL Network draft analyst Mike Mayock raved about Warmack at the scouting combine in February. "On tape, [Warmack] is the best football player I saw this year," Mayock said.
Warmack knows of the recent history of guards not going high in the first round. ESPN NFL Insider Adam Schefter said earlier in the month that Warmack going later than expected "wouldn't be completely shocking based on some of the whispers around the league." Perhaps there is a chance he could be there when the Giants pick.
Warmack said he would not be disappointed one bit to land in New York.
"New York has a lot to offer," Warmack said. "I am all about different cultures, being around different people and learning different things -- eating different foods and experiencing different conversations and different experiences from people all over the world."
"[The visit with the Giants] was great," Warmack added. "I got a chance to speak with [Reese]; he is a nice guy, from the South too. Met with coaches. It was a great experience. It felt like home when I was up there."
Besides playing in the NFL, Warmack has another career goal that New York certainly could help him with. He hopes to be on Food Network someday.
"I am trying to get my own show when it is all said and done," Warmack said. "I love food."
And as for that porterhouse that was as big as his head, Warmack had little problems polishing if off.
"Oh yeah," Warmack said confidently. "I finished that, man."