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USA Today Sports Media Group
USA Today Sports Media Group
Dan Benton

Giants add WR, ILB in latest 2-round Draft Wire mock

Our friends over at Draft Wire continued their 2023 NFL draft evaluation and projections this week with an updated two-round mock.

In it, they have the New York Giants addressing two key needs.

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First and foremost, they have Big Blue selecting Ohio State wide receiver Jaxon Smith-Njigba in Round 1.

If there’s a worse receiver situation in the NFL right now, I’d love to see it. The Giants desperately need an infusion of talent here, and despite missing most of the 2022 season due to injury, Smith-Njigba’s 2021 tape was impressive enough to warrant first-round consideration.

In Round 2, they have the Giants taking Iowa inside linebacker Jack Campbell.

Here’s a quick scouting report on Campbell provided by Sports Illustrated:

Extended frame with stretched-out limbs. Turns this into an advantage, scoping out the offense and attacking accordingly. Expert tackler who employs precision striking and consistent fundamentals. Capable of dropping his weight and launching to win the leverage game vs ball carriers. Hand usage and arm length permit him to navigate in traffic, remaining clean on his path to the running back. Sufficient lateral agility to side-step linemen and fill into his assigned gap. Beats the opposing guard or tackle to his spot repeatedly, using acceleration and a dip technique to stay untouched. Knows his angles, leading to minimal excess in terms of yardage.

Not afraid to get dirty as needed, plunging into blockers on wide zone plays to let defenders behind him fill. Useful Blitzer that uses downhill explosion to disrupt the quarterback’s timing or pop in his pads to displace linemen. Impressive fluidity for his size, showing loose hips that empower him to drop into coverage. Range and instincts are most apparent here, where he surveys passing lanes and covers multiple reads at a time. Will cover backs and tight ends in man coverage, welcoming the responsibility.

Very cerebral player that will align his defensive front and linebackers. Shows understanding of formations and tendencies, repeatedly sliding his d-line to correctly counter the offense. Slighter frame with lack of lower body mass. Initial punch can knock him off his spot, has to beat the linemen on timing. Can be caught flat-footed in coverage. Eagerness can cause him to overshoot, leaving backside gains. On the ground too often considering his athleticism. More of a technical issue rather than athletic ability, where he attempts to gain leverage and opens himself up to be finished because of his height.

Campbell is a terrific tackler that is reminiscent of prominent inside linebackers of the modern NFL. His length and instincts create an environment no offense coordinator wants to prepare against. Another season of evidence can point to a favorable draft position.

Although these picks would address two areas of need for the Giants, each comes with some question marks and concerns. General manager Joe Schoen would be better served to draft more sure things.

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