A busy weekend for the Cleveland Browns might have just thrown a big wrench into the future plans of the New York Giants.
After acquiring wide receiver Jarvis Landry from the Miami Dolphins, the Browns traded for Buffalo Bills quarterback Tyrod Taylor, quickly injecting the hapless, winless team with notable talent.
But how does this affect the Giants?
After going 0-16 last year, the Browns hold the first-overall pick (as well as the fourth) in the NFL Draft this year. An organization that has been desperately searching for a franchise quarterback since its reboot in 1999 might be under the impression that it got one in Taylor, who has passed for 51 touchdowns compared to just 18 interceptions over the last three years as a starter with the Bills.
The big question in the build-up of the draft was whether the Browns would draft a quarterback with the No. 1 pick and address another pressing need with the fourth pick. That would have left Penn State running back prospect Saquon Barkley, who is considered the best overall talent in the draft class, open for the Giants to snap up with the No. 2 pick.
New York was very high Barkley and looked to be the team’s preferred choice.
Now it seems as though the Browns will take Barkley at No. 1 to round out a potent-looking offense that will include Taylor under center, Landry, Cory Coleman and Josh Gordon at wide receiver, tight end David Njoku, and a solid offensive line.
So what could the Giants do at No. 2 if Barkley is gone?
Draft a QB
While new general manager Dave Gettleman has given veteran Eli Manning the vote of confidence under center for 2018, the Giants still could take the best quarterback prospect available in the draft.
There isn’t a shortage of options, either as Wyoming’s Josh Allen, USC’s Sam Darnold, UCLA’s Josh Rosen, Oklahoma’s Baker Mayfield and Louisville’s Lamar Jackson have all appeared on numerous first-round mock drafts.
Picking who they see fits best within the organization, the Giants could redshirt whichever young talent they choose and throw him in the mix for the starting job in 2019 alongside Davis Webb, who was taken out of Cal in last year’s draft.
Take the best possible talent
New York might deem any quarterback worthy of their No. 2 pick and decide to take the best possible prospect available regardless of position.
The general consensus is that NC State defensive end Bradley Chubb is that talent, though he would have to contend with Olivier Vernon and Jason Pierre-Paul for playing time. However, the Philadelphia Eagles proved in 2017that it doesn’t hurt to have too much talent coming from the edge.
In his last two seasons at NC State, Chubb racked up 20 sacks and 44 tackles for a loss in just 25 games.
Trade the pick
There are going to be plenty of teams desperate to take a quarterback and if Gettleman chooses not to pick a passer, he might use the No. 2 selection as a bargaining chip to acquire something more.
Hypothetically speaking, the Bills will be in need of a quarterback after dealing Taylor and they could deal both of their first rounders (Nos. 16 and 22) to the Giants for their No. 2 pick. That would allow the Giants to address any of their needs, whether it be getting offensive line help in the form of Mike McGlinchey of Notre Dame or Will Hernandez from UTEP, an interior defensive lineman like Michigan’s Maurice Hurst or Washington’s Vita Vea, or a running back with plenty of upside like Derrius Guice out of LSU.