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NFL Draft 2024: Best available players for New York Giants on Day 2

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The New York Giants did not select a quarterback in the first round. Instead, they drafted the electric LSU wide receiver Malik Nabers. Six quarterbacks flew off the board in the top-12 picks. NFL Network reported that the Giants were trying to trade up to the third selection, presumably for a quarterback, so they may look to add one somewhere in this draft.

Here’s a quick recap of the Big Blue View big board:

Joe Schoen and the Giants may wheel and deal on Day 2. Currently, the Giants possess the 47th and 70th picks in the draft in the second and third rounds, respectively. Here are the best available players left after day one who should be interested in the Giants. The wide receivers will be excluded, but my top three left are Texas’ Adonai Mitchell, Georgia’s Ladd McConkey, and Florida State’s Keon Coleman.

Round 2

Cooper DeJean, DB, Iowa

It’s unlikely that the Giants would receive an opportunity to select the versatile Iowa defensive back. Many anticipated that DeJean would be selected in Round 1, but he remains one of the top targets after failing to be selected in the first round. He’s talented enough to play cornerback and safety while operating as a weapon in defensive sub-packages.

He finished his college career with 120 tackles, 20 passes defended, and seven interceptions in a 6-foot, 203-pound frame. He’s a smart anticipator who returned three of his seven interceptions for touchdowns. DeJean is a sensational tackler who would fit Shane Bowen’s system well, but the Giants would likely have to trade up to select him.


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Kool-Aid McKinstry, CB, Alabama

Kool-Aid McKinstry is a press-man mirror-match cornerback with an excellent understanding of concepts and the coverage rules of his defense. He’s very patient at the line of scrimmage, with disciplined eyes and good technique from the LOS, up the route stem, and into the break. McKinstry is also disruptive at the catch point but could do a much better job locating the football to increase the probability of creating turnovers (only two interceptions in his career).

McKinstry has the size, physicality, and fluidity to be an impact player as an outside cornerback in the NFL; while he isn’t slow, his game is more predicated on short-area quickness than long speed. He is smart, sound in run support, and can play in any defensive style. He fits what Shane Bowen is looking for from a cornerback; great eyes/awareness, match experience, good tackler, etc. It’s not surprising that the Giants brought him in for a Top-30 visit. He would be one of my ideal fits for the Giants at Pick 47; it’s unlikely he would fall that far.


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Mike Sainristil, CB, Michigan

Many believed Mike Sainristil could be a sneaky Round 1 pick. He is a feisty nickel cornerback who uses his quickness and reactive speed to promptly close width on receivers who are tightly covered. His eye-discipline and attention to detail allowed him to thrive in the zone, and he has all the necessary coverage traits to stay in phase as a man coverage defender. However, his long speed was exposed a few times on tape, and that remains a slight concern despite his adequate 4.47 at the Combine.

A team looking for a reliable apex defender who is small – but packs a punch – would do well to add Sainristil, a willing run-support defender. His lack of size/frame will work against him in several areas; while willing and physical, at times, in run support, he can be prone to latching and holding onto ball carriers that are much bigger than himself. He also must optimize his coverage, for well-placed football is difficult for him to defend due to his 29th percentile arm length.

Overall, Sainristil is a good football player who is a small tone-setter. He’s smart, is an excellent blitzer who disguises his intentions well, and he’s a fluid athlete with incredible competitive toughness. The Giants could use a nickel – tone setting – type of player, and Sainristil fits that description.

Johnny Newton, DL, Illinois

Johnny Newton is a disruptive player from the interior who does well in one-on-one pass-rushing situations. He is explosive and efficient with his hands to create separation from the interior. Newton frequently aligned as the end in an ODD front, playing mostly 3-technique to 5-technique. He’s not a liability as a run defender, but double teams can uproot him due to his size.

Teams are looking for explosive interior defensive linemen who can create pressure from within the pocket; Newton fits that description and should hear his name called relatively early in the draft. A player like Newton would thrive next to Dexter Lawrence. If he fell a little bit in the second round, Schoen should entertain trading up to secure his talents on a defense that prioritizes four-man pass rushes.



Braden Fiske, DL, Florida State

Braden Fiske is best utilized by penetrating and gap exchanging to leverage his quick first step, adaptability, and processing as a football player. He may struggle in a system inside the 4i-shade where he has to stack, read, and shed. He has elite competitive toughness, and his motor never runs out of gas. A team that uses four-man pass-rushing concepts (twists, simulated pressures) should love the idea of adding a player like Fiske. Especially from the twisting standpoint, his angles of approach and first step are excellent in these situations.

Fiske recorded 131 pressures throughout his college career. 48 of those came in his final year with Western Michigan. He assimilated well in Florida State’s aggressive defense that relied heavily on gap-exchanging at the snap. Fiske, along with future first-round pick Jared Verse, were excellent in their twist game, which is a perfect fit for what Bowen will try to do defensively.

Fiske may not be the strongest at the point of attack, but he’s not a liability either. Fiske has the upside to start but will be a good complementary piece with a pass-rushing upside. Although he tested incredibly well, he still could fall to Pick 47 due to his third-percentile arm length and his age (he’s already 24).

Trey Benson, RB, Florida State

Trey Benson has had two productive seasons since his devasting knee injury in 2020. He’s a big back who thrived in a power/gap system with experience in zone. He has explosive long speed- clocking over 21 MPH several times in 2023 – with excellent acceleration in his second gear. He’s flashed excellent vision when sifting through traffic between the hashes but also had a propensity to bounce runs outside; consistency on the vision front can likely be improved, but overall, I’m not concerned with his vision, and it’s enhanced by his patience/timing, and ability to wait for blocks to develop to find the best answer.

Benson’s combination of size and speed is enticing. He’s not slippery in space, but he showed the ability to set defenders up and use his burst/speed to break their angles. He wasn’t used extensively as a receiver but looked solid when asked, and his ability to pass protect was functional. The Giants displayed interest in Benson. The Giants, specifically, have many needs on their roster that could be addressed in the second round. It remains unclear if Benson would be at pick 70 for Big Blue. His capabilities suggest a Day 2 player, and he has starting upside, but the Giants and their offseason moves may suggest running back is more of a Day 3 option.

Round 3

Max Melton, CB, Rutgers

The Giants showed interest in Melton, whom they hosted as a local invite, saving one of their top-30 visits in the process. His plant and drive ability, along with his zone awareness, make him a perfect match for what Shane Bowne is looking for defensively. His explosiveness jumps off the screen — just as he jumped out of Lucas Oil Stadium at the Combine. Melton had an 11’4” broad jump and a 40 ½-inch vertical.

Melton had a phenomenal senior season for Rutgers and possesses great eye discipline and route savvy for zone coverage with all the necessary athletic traits to compete at the NFL level in man coverage. His aggressive nature is admirable and does lead to interceptions and huge tackles, but he must become a more sure tackler to avoid mistakes. His combination of coverage, willingness in run support, and competitive toughness will likely make Melton a coaching – and draftnik – favorite. Melton should hear his name called well before his brother Bo did in last year’s draft.

Andru Phillips, CB, Kentucky

Like Melton, Phillips also jumped out of Lucas Oil Stadium. He recorded an 11’3” broad jump and a 42-inch vertical. He’s not as sudden as Melton, and Melton was more explosive on tape, but Phillips would be an option at Pick 70, if Melton is no longer around. The Giants did have Phillips in for a top-30 visit.

He’s a tough-minded, explosive athlete with impressive movement skills and fluidity to flip his hips, stay balanced, and keep his eyes on target – perfect for shaded zone coverage and mid-pointing. He can play inside and outside, and he has the athletic traits and experience to succeed in both man and zone coverage. He’s feisty at the catch point, with good technique to disrupt, but lacks the ability to locate and secure interceptions – had zero in college.

Phillips’ anticipation skills and discipline are still a work in progress in coverage. He has the right mentality in run support and can deliver solid hits when he’s in pursuit, but he’s more of a wrap-up and hold-on tackler from closer proximity. Phillips is raw, and his hands/physical nature get him in trouble. There are aspects of his game that still need to be refined, but the baseline athletic traits raise his ceiling.

Cooper Bebee, OL, Kansas State

Beebe is built like an old-school offensive guard – just a fire hydrant with impressive mobility for a player of his size/build. Beebe’s 93rd percentile 40-yard dash at 322 pounds is impressive. Beebe has several plays on tape where he is way downfield, cutting off second and third-level defenders, and he also has a road-grading style in the trenches.

Beebe takes good angles of approach to contact. He is a better fit for a more Power/Gap type of system, and it’s easy to fall in love with his balance and play strength, as well as his nimbleness in pass protection. The big concern with Beebe is his arm length; the 2nd percentile is a major concern and renders the likelihood of him playing tackle almost non-existent.

Beebe only allowed only one sack over his final 41 games at Kansas State. He could play more within his own frame when driving base blocks at the line of scrimmage (chest over toes), but he’s still a balanced player who finishes blocks with authority.

Beebe played 1,847 career snaps at left guard, 778 at left tackle, 476 at right tackle, and 25 at right guard. He’s experienced but still just 22 years old. He would quickly become a fan favorite and could be a key figure in turning around the Giants’ offensive line. The Giants did host Bebee on a top-30 visit.

Cole Bishop, S, Utah

Cole Bishop didn’t generate much buzz during the pre-draft process, but he may be one of the bigger winners of the Reese’s Senior Bowl and the Scouting Combine. He’s not the most dense, and lacks elite length, but he’s tall, intelligent, and a fluid athlete to operate in space. Bishop does a good job coming downhill to execute his run assignments with adequate overall play strength. His tackling technique could improve, but he can play from depth or near the line of scrimmage, with upside as a blitzer.

In the correct environment, Bishop could start year one while operating as a core special teamer. He has the eyes and route understanding for zone, can play the post as a single-high, and is annoying as a man coverage defender against tight ends. He is a smart, tough, and dependable player at a position the Giants may need when the NFL draft rolls around.

Kris Jenkins, DL, Michigan

Kris Jenkins is a solid overall defensive tackle who is sound as a run defender. His ability to maintain a low center of gravity while keeping his chest small allows him to maximize his explosiveness and ability to be disruptive into the pocket as a pass rusher.

Jenkins’ ability to explode out of a stagnant stance with a low and controlled profile – and heavy hands – allows him to gain an advantage in the half-man relationship while providing little to no surface area for the blocker to contact. He may not be the most sudden pass rusher when he’s out of his stance, but his ability to stay low, use bend, and string moves together allows him to create advantageous angles into the pocket, which does pressure the QB; plus, he has a plan when he pass rushes and will take advantage of over-aggressive blockers with a variety of pass rushing moves.

He is an elite competitor who doesn’t stop until the whistle is blown. He does a good job working through the LOS to penetrate zone rushing concepts, does well to read, react, and quickly shed blocks at the POA, and he was able to rise his level of play in the most important moments of a memorable season for Michigan. He will be an impactful IDL who can play across the LOS at the next level.

RB Audric Estimé, RB, Notre Dame

I get it, he ran a 4.71 at the Combine, and that could drop him out of Day 2. Still, I really appreciate Estimé’s throwback-in-nature game and running style, which is combined with good footwork and vision. He’s physical and powerful, with good control and contact balance. He’s the type of back who can run through arm tackles and consistently pick up hard-earned yardage—a fan-favorite type of back. Still, he lacks receiving experience, is just a solid athlete, and lacks the home run-hitting value many other backs possess.

Estimé may not be the most explosive back, but he’s a patient football runner who should thrive in short-yardage situations with the upside of being a very good change-of-pace back to start with the body type to receive double-digit carries in the NFL. Estimé is best suited for a downhill rushing attack that features counter and power/gap concepts, but he has the vision, patience, and feet to play in a zone system. He has the upside to be a starter, especially if he proves himself as a receiver.

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