Round 4 – Pick 108
Darius Leonard, LB, South Carolina State
One thing that we know about David Gettleman’s draft history is his love for linebackers and interior defensive lineman. With Snacks Harrison and Dalvin Tomlinson on the roster, the defensive interior is not a glaring need. However, the switch to an odd front does make linebacker a priority. Alec Ogletree was brought over in a trade with the Rams. The team may feel comfortable starting B.J. Goodson but depth is needed.
Darius Leonard of South Carolina State is an intriguing prospect that could catch Gettleman’s eye. He is a strong athlete at linebacker with the ability to get sideline to sideline. His coverage skills are improving and he is a productive of a linebacker as any in this draft. Leonard would be a candidate to be on the field on all downs with some development. Him and Ogletree would give the Giants a strong combination up the middle against both the run and the pass.
Round 5 – Pick 139
D.J. Reed, CB, Kansas State
Formerly a position of strength on the Giants, the corner position is starting to look like a weak link in an otherwise strong defense. Janoris Jenkins is still around and playing well. Outside of that there are questions surrounding every other corner. Eli Apple, the team’s former first round pick, may not be back with the team after a tumultuous 2017 campaign. Corner is a more glaring need for this team than most would like to think.
D.J. Reed from Kansas State could help solidify the position in the future. Reed is undersized at only 5-foot-9 and 190 pounds. Despite that size, he competes every time he steps on the field. There has never been a moment too big for this guy. His speed and mirror ability are top notch. Reed also is a sure tackler which could make him valuable as a nickel, a package that is becoming more of a norm than a sub package. He could get on the field early on in sub packages. Teams will also be intrigued by his return capabilities which he flashed during his time at Kansas State.
Round 7 -No pick
Without a sixth or seventh round pick, the Giants are a candidate to trade down in one of the day two spots. This team has holes to fill and an aging roster. They need to gather picks to address holes and prepare for elder players decline.