With the 2018 NFL Combine officially kicking off Tuesday, the rebuild for new Giants GM Dave Gettleman starts as well.
The No. 2 overall pick sits in his lap, and on top of that, a free-agent market that the Giants are certainly going to enter to bolster their roster. So, between looking at possible free-agent targets while trying to interview and grade the prospects in Indianapolis, it is safe to say Gettleman and the Giants have their hands full this offseason.
That isn't to say Gettleman isn't up for the challenge. He already has his master plan shaped out.
"You evaluate your club, you turn around and have a plan for free agency," Gettleman told The Post's Paul Schwartz . "The goal in free agency is to set yourself up so you can take the best player available in the draft, that's the way you operate. It doesn't always work that way but that's what you want. You don't want to be in a position where you have to draft 'a' whatever it is."
The Giants will surely be active on Tuesday at Lucas Oil Stadium with interviews allowed to be conducted with running backs and offensive linemen -- two positions the Giants will look to upgrade. Penn State's Saquon Barkely is the top running back in the draft, and has been linked to the Giants in various mock drafts.
For linemen, the Giants could have a plethora of scheduled interviews, which should include the top interior lineman in Notre Dame's Quenton Nelson, who is expected to be a top-10 pick.
But the future franchise quarterback question will be following around Gettleman like his shadow until he makes his pick on April 26. The Giants could potentially look at free-agent options like Case Keenum or A.J. McCarron. But the consensus decision is Gettleman will use the draft to find Eli Manning's successor.
The thing is, Gettleman needs to be very impressed with a quarterback on and off the field because he sees the styles of play in college and NFL as entirely different monsters.
"Here's the problem, the college game, for the most part, is very different from ours," Gettleman said. "That's No.1. No. 2, there are some of these kids coming out of college that really don't have Quarterback 101, they've never taken a snap from center, they've never made a huddle call, they've never ID'd the Mike [linebacker], never called a protection, never called an audible and never thrown a hot [read]. That's six things, that's Quarterback 101, they've never done any of that. So you've got that issue.
"I don't care, the style of the game may evolve and change but the basics, they may evolve but they don't change. In our league, a quarterback has to make plays from the pocket. Has to. If he can't he's not gonna be successful, plain and simple."
This is why the Giants will look at all their options very carefully as they don't want to mess up their coveted first-rounder. Take Ryan Leaf and JaMarcus Russell as prime example of failed quarterbacks taken early.
"If you take a guy just to take a guy, especially at the quarterback position, and he fails, you set yourself back five years," Gettleman noted. "There are teams that are in what I call quarterback hell. They've got a quality defense, they've got good special teams and they're going 9-7 and 8-8, 9-7 and now if there is a legitimate guy they've got to trade up and give away the farm to get the guy."
Gettleman doesn't want his first move as the Giants' GM to put Big Blue into Quarterback Hell. Instead, he wants to fufill John Mara's hope that the team will be better from it's 3-13 finish last year.
It all starts at the Combine.