1.  Season Summary

It was the best of times, it was the worst of times…then it was the best of times again. After defeating the Patriots for the first time in the 2011 season, the New York Giants raced out to a 6-2 record through week 9. Then, they went into the annual ritual that is their second-half swoon, losing five of the next six, leaving them 7-7 and the New York fans and media calling for coach Tom Coughlin’s head. The rest is history…or rather, made history: The Giants finished the regular season with two must-have wins to secure the NFC East title. Another amazing playoff run later, the giants found themselves wearing Cinderella’s slipper once again, as they defeated the favored New England Patriots in the Super Bowl for the 2nd time in the last five years.

2.  2011 Record

Regular Season: 9-7 NFC East Champion
Playoffs: Super Bowl Champion

3.  Positions of Need

Father time has taken his toll on the Giants OL, and replenishing it with youth should be the Giants top priority in the draft. Looking towards the defense, LB, and particularly MLB, has been a need for years for New York. With the signing of Martellus Bennett, TE is no longer a dire need, but they’ll keep an eye focused on TE, RB and DB if they find value at those positions when it’s time for the Super Bowl champs to make their pick.

4.  First Round Target(s)

When drafting with the last pick in the round, the Giants will have to see what falls to them. However, likely targets at the 32nd pick are two players with size and power to hold up through the bruising NFC East - OL Cordy Glenn (Georgia) and LB Dont’a Hightower (Alabama).
 
Glenn provides surprising quickness to go along with his 6’6”, 346lb frame, and versatility to possibly play RT, giving the Giants greater insurance against injuries forcing their veterans to play out of position.
 
A powerful and intimidating presence, Hightower could be the real thumper New York has been searching for since Antonio Pierce suited up for the G-Men.

5.  Vultures: Teams To Keep An Eye On

Both the Steelers (24th pick) and the Bengals (17th & 21st) have very similar needs to the Giants.  Fortunately, if players targeted by New York slide past Pittsburgh at 24, they have a decent chance of still being there at 32.

6.  Trade Winds

It’s rare for the Giants to trade up in the draft unless they see a player they feel can have a franchise-changing impact (like they did in ’04 for Eli Manning). So, I’m not expecting the team to make a move up the board this year either.
 
However there are two players in this draft that appear born to be Giants:  Boston College’s tackling machine, LB Luke Kuechly, and Stanford OG David DeCastro, who plays with the kind of nasty streak that Tom Coughlin loves in his lineman.
 
To really guarantee a shot at both guys, the Giants would have to trade up to the Seahawks at 12 or Cardinals at 13.  The price to move up that high would be costly. A more realistic trade partner might the Titans at 20. Securing the 20th pick would make sure Cincinnati doesn’t snag the apple of the Big Apple’s eye.

2011:  1.19 – Prince Amukamara
2010:  1.15 – Jason Pierre-Paul
2009:  1.29 – Hakeem Nicks
2008:  1.31 – Kenny Phillips
2007:  1.20 – Aaron Ross