The most recent reporting regarding the Giants’ plan for the second overall pick was simple: Quarterback Sam Darnold if he’s there; otherwise, running back Saquon Barkley or defensive end Bradley Chubb.
Paul Schwartz of the New York Post has a new take on the situation. While not necessarily a clear-cut report and instead more of an informed tapestry of rumor, analysis, and speculation, Schwartz predicts that the Giants won’t take a quarterback at No. 2, because they don’t feel strongly enough about the likelihood that any of them will become a perennial All-Pro and potential Hall of Famer.
Instead, the thinking is that the Giants and G.M. Dave Gettleman will lean toward Barkley with the second pick.
“I thought all along this is the guy Dave wants,’’ an unnamed scout with no apparent connection to Gettleman, other than “crossing paths with him on the road over the years,” suggested. “And he might get him, if Cleveland is dumb enough not to take him at No. 1.”
And that’s the risk in rolling the dice on a franchise quarterback. Roll wrong, and a team like the Titans will take Jake Locker and a team like the Jaguars will take Blaine Gabbert with a guy like J.J. Watt still on the board.
“I don’t think Dave will take a quarterback,’’ the unnamed said. “I don’t see it. I could see Chubb putting on that gold jacket. I could see [guard Quenton] Nelson putting on that gold jacket. Barkley, no question. If you have a crystal ball and say, ‘This guy is gonna be an annual All-Pro and make it to the Hall of Fame,’ Barkley would be the No. 1 guy.’’
Here’s another factor to consider: The ongoing presence of Eli Manning. As Hall of Fame coach Tony Dungy explained last month on PFT Live, the Giants should ignore the potential awkwardness arising from putting a rookie with Eli if they believe the rookie will become a star player. If they don’t believe any of the quarterbacks will become stars, they should take a player at another position whom they believe will be a star.