The Giants went through the entire NFL Draft, three days and nights, having the No. 4 pick in the entire draft — and, way down at 255, the very last pick — and did not take anyone tasked with carrying or catching the football.
Not one wide receiver, running back or tight end.
This says plenty as to what general manager Dave Gettleman and new head coach Joe Judge think about the offensive skill players on their roster.
In a year with remarkable depth and talent at receiver, the Giants did not dive in, even though a case can be made adding a player to their existing group made sense. Sterling Shepard last season struggled with concussion issues and that is a concern moving forward. Golden Tate, 31, is entering his 11th NFL season. Darius Slayton, a fifth-round pick from Auburn, was a revelation as a rookie, with 48 receptions for 740 yards. He led the team with eight touchdowns and an average per catch of 15.4 yards.
Passing over receivers in the draft does not mean the Giants will ignore the position. They jumped to action Saturday night, agreeing to terms with undrafted free agents, and three of them are receivers from accomplished college programs. Coming soon are Binjimen Victor and Austin Mack of Ohio State and Derrick Dillon of LSU. It is unlikely, but perhaps one of them can become the next Victor Cruz, forever the hallmark when it comes to undrafted receivers able to make it big. More realistic, finding a way onto the roster or the practice squad would be quite an accomplishment for any of the three undrafted receivers.
Having receivers not get drafted and sign free-agent contracts shows the talent-rich nature of the Ohio State and LSU programs. Victor, Mark and Dillon were all four-star recruits coming out of high school and yet they were never or rarely full-time starters in college.
Victor is a tall (6-foot-4), long-armed and fairly skinny athlete with a 4.6 time in the 40-yard dash. He did not start in his first three years and last season caught 35 passes for 573 yards and six touchdowns to run his career totals to 82 catches for 1,312 yards and 18 touchdowns. He finds his way into the end zone, averaging a touchdown every 4.6 receptions. He is considered a better athlete than he is an accomplished receiver.
Mack is more compact (6-foot-1, 208) and ran a 4.59 40-yard dash. He is an excellent route-runner, solid in and out of his breaks but at times has problems securing the ball. In 2019 he caught 27 passes for 361 yards and three touchdowns. His career numbers are 79 receptions for 1,050 yards and six touchdowns.
• Giants’ NFL Draft tracker: Live round-by-round picks and analysis
Dillon is a 5-foot-11 speedster, clocked at 4.29 in a 40-yard dash he ran in Baton Rouge in a makeshift Pro Day after the LSU event was cancelled. He played in 48 games for the Tigers, making 11 starts and his career totals are 51 receptions for 634 yards and four touchdowns. This past season, Dillon in 14 games (three starts) had 15 catches for 202 yards and two touchdowns for the national champions.
There are jobs to be earned at receiver. This undrafted trio will compete with Corey Coleman, Da’Mari Scott, Reggie White Jr., Cody Core, Alex Bachman and David Sills, although Core’s value on special teams is the main reason why he is part of a roster.
Here are other undrafted players reportedly set to sign with the Giants:
QB Case Cookus, Northern Arizona
TE Kyle Markway, South Carolina
WR/TE Rysen John, Simon Fraser (British Columbia)
RB Javon Leake, Maryland
LB Kyle Murphy, Rhode Island
EDGE Dana Levine, Temple
EDGE Niko Lalos, Dartmouth
CB Malcolm Elmore, Central Methodist
DB Christian Angulo, Hampton