Months of speculation and suspense will end when the Giants send in their card for the No. 5 pick in the 2022 NFL Draft — or at least subside significantly, since they then have to turn around and pick at No. 7 soon after.
We don’t know who the Giants will end up with. But we do have a good grasp on who is in the mix. Let’s rank the most-likely picks:
1. Mississippi State OT Charles Cross
The Giants need a right tackle. And they are reportedly in love with Cross. Does that make him the pick? It likely depends on which tackles are still on the board when it’s time for the Giants to make their selection.
2. N.C. State OT Ikem Ekwonu
Ekwonu’s stock has consistently risen the last few months. There is no guarantee he will still be around at No. 5. If he is, things will get interesting. Would general manager Joe Schoen take Cross over Ekwonu straight up?
3. Alabama OT Evan Neal
Neal has a chance to go No. 1. And it’s hard to imagine he will get through the top-4 picks. That puts him here. But if he is available, it will be hard for the Giants to pass him up. Neal is arguably the most NFL-ready tackle.
4. Oregon DE Kayvon Thibodeaux
Thibodeaux could be there for New York at No. 5 or 7 considering Aidan Hutchinson’s top-three potential and Travon Walker’s ever-rising stock. Don’t expect that to be set in stone though. Jets general manager Joe Douglas could swoop in and nab Thibodeaux with the fourth pick.
5. Georgia DE Travon Walker
Walker is the current betting favorite to be the No. 1 pick. But it’s still hard to wrap your head around that given his lack of collegiate production. Would it be a huge shock if he drops out of the top-4? At this point, yes. But it cannot be ruled out and the Giants need pass rushers.
6. Cincinnati CB Sauce Gardner
We have Gardner farther down the list due to more pressing needs. But if the Giants draft a tackle and multiple pass rushers are off the board by the seventh pick, they could focus on the secondary. Gardner is the top corner of the class, so it’s hard to imagine he will be available. But crazier things have happened.
7. LSU CB Derek Stingley Jr
Stingley would be the next-best option at corner if Gardner is gone. The Giants need a starter with James Bradberry on the way out the door.