The Giants will select twelfth in the first round of the upcoming NFL Draft and will be at the mercy of the eleven teams in front of them. Normally, they would take who falls to them and move on.

But this year, there is an usual abundance of talented players. This draft goes several rounds deep so at No. 12, they will be getting more than just a talented player. They'll be getting a difference-maker.

Our colleague Michael Cohen takes a guess at some of the difference-makers the Giants could have a chance to select in Round One:

Five Players That Will Be Gone By the time select at No. 12...

Jake Matthews, Greg Robinson, (OT) – Top tier left tackles go early.

Sammy Watkins (WR) – The top wideout on the board will certainly be gone.

Jadeveon Clowney (DE) – Don't believe the haters – he's got freakish athletic skills and will go in the top five.

Khalil Mack (LB) – Incredible three-down linebacker who can rush the passer. He'll be long gone at 12.

Players that could be gone by 12 that make no sense for the Giants...

Blake Bortles, Teddy Bridgewater, Johnny Manziel (QB) – I must admit that I'm not 100 percent sure that all three of the Big Three will be gone by 12. All of the Big Three have question marks. Teams seem to be reaching less for QBs lately. It's a reasonable bet that Jacksonville and Cleveland will take a QB with their picks. Will famed ex-defensive coordinator Mike Zimmer take the plunge in Minnesota? Will Houston really pass on one of the elite defenders to draft a QB that is not a surefire top 10-15 NFL QB? I'm not convinced. If one of the quarterbacks slips to 12 (and beyond), that means that another player in the Group of Seven below will be taken ahead of the Giants.

The Group of Seven: the remaining elite players that might be around for the Giants (that make sense)

Taylor Lewan (OT) – I'm not sure about his recent criminal charges but, at present, given his clean record, I'm willing to guess that it won't be a major hit to his draft stock. If Lewan is available at 12, I'd be thrilled to see the Giants pick him. Pairing him with Pugh would give the Giants a solid pair of linemen for the next 10 years.

Eric Ebron (TE) – I'm not sure that this is the most exciting pick at 12. Ebron has talent but unless he reaches Gronkowski/Graham levels of production, you are not going to get as much production out of a tight end as you will a top tier wideout. Of the 24 1,000 yard receivers last year, only 1 (Graham) was a tight end. And let's face it, with Ebron, you are drafting a receiver who can block a little, not a mauling blocking TE who is also a great receiver. I'd be fairly surprised to see the Giants draft a tight end here but he's been mocked to the Giants so I'm including him.

Mike Evans (WR) – Big, strong, good speed, played very well against top competition, he's a great pick here. Not so much because he has the highest upside of the top receivers other than Watkins but because his floor is much higher. I'd be thrilled to see him paired with Cruz and Randle.

Aaron Donald (DT) – Honestly, if he is as good as his billing, this would be my favorite pick. Why? Getting a defensive tackle who can rush the passer is like getting green vegetables that taste like steak (you have to have veggies, but don't generally expect them to taste that great). Defensive tackles are supposed to be big slow guys who plug up the middle and stop the run. If you can get one that can rush the passer, it's a gift. Defensive tackles are generally blocked by big and slow guards and centers; if you have a fast defensive tackle, you create huge matchup problems. Adding Donald would be a huge help to an otherwise-anemic Giants pass rush. Putting him on the same side of the line as JPP on passing downs would create matchup nightmares for defenses.

Anthony Barr (LB) – The Giants don't generally draft linebackers in the first round because they focus on generating a pass rush from the defensive end position. Having said that, Barr has a tremendous combination of quickness, strength and speed and would instantly help the Giants' pass rush. Is he still learning the game? Yes. But he's a guy who is still learning the game who had 13.5 sacks in 2012 and 10 in 2013 against elite competition. He should be able to learn to play strong side linebacker on run downs and move down to end in the NASCAR formation on passing downs. Assuming the Giants could modify their schemes to utilize him, this could be a great pick. Also, please recall that Paysinger and Williams are free agents after 2014, so the Giants will need to fill some holes at linebacker.

Darqueze Dennard, Justin Gilbert (CB) – The Giants are stocked at corner in 2014 but only 2 of them are signed past 2014 (Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie and Trumaine McBride). The Giants will need a second corner in 2015 and beyond and grabbing another top cornerback would create an elite tandem in the Giants' secondary for several years.

Lewan seems to be a safe pick that no one can really critique considering the shape of the offensive line after last season.

Ebron has also created a groundswell. The Giants need a TE and he's the top one on the board. It's almost a no-brainer when you think about it.

You know how we feel about Mike Evans. His presence in the Giants' offense could be the key to the castle. A pitch-and-catch playmate for Eli. He could be the NFL's next great impact receiver, which leads me to believe he won't be around at 12.

Donald is another no-brainer. A guy that could become the glue to their defense. He would give the Giants a solid backbone up the middle of the field along with Jon Beason and the solid safety group.

I would safely say the back seven of the defense will not be addressed in the first round. Some see the Giants taking Anthony Barr, but unless they realign their defensive scheme to feature his abilities as a pass rusher, I don't think it's a good idea (see Clint Sintim).

Both of those corners are excellent prospects, but the Giants just signed DRC, Thurmond and McBride so I doubt they would take them over any of those other players.

Tags: 2014 NFL Draft, New York Giants

Utah Utes offensive lineman Garett Bolles (72) celebrates a touchdown by Utah Utes tight end Evan Moeai (not pictured) during the second half against the Washington Huskies at Rice-Eccles Stadium. (Russell Isabella)
Utah Utes offensive lineman Garett Bolles (72) celebrates a touchdown by Utah Utes tight end Evan Moeai (not pictured) during the second half against the Washington Huskies at Rice-Eccles Stadium. (Russell Isabella)

Ralph Vacchiano, SNY.tv

One last look at the top players on the board for the Giants as they prepare to make the 23rd overall pick on April 27:

1. OT Garett Bolles, Utah - The Giants know they need help at tackle, but they don't plan to reach for one if the value isn't there. This 6-5, 297-pounder might be the best fit, though. He's 25, but that doesn't seem to bother the Giants. More concerning is his lack of experience (only one year in FBS). The Giants have seemed to like him best among the top offensive linemen throughout this process. He might not get past the Denver Broncos at 20. Whether the Giants take him or not may depend on who else is there and how much "need" really matters to them this year.  (Last report: 2)

2. LB Jarrad Davis, Florida - He might actually be No. 1 on the Giants' wish list, but his stock is seemingly rising to the point where the Giants might have to move up to get him (something they're not likely to do). He's a 6-1, 238-pound outside linebacker with the skills and intelligence the Giants have been looking for at that spot for several years. Scouts also rave about his character, which makes him even more attractive. It wasn't that long ago that some scouts pegged him as more of a second-round pick, but that doesn't seem likely anymore. (Last report: N/A)

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New England Patriots running back LeGarrette Blount (29) during the second quarter of an NFL football game against the Miami Dolphins at Hard Rock Stadium. (Reinhold Matay)
New England Patriots running back LeGarrette Blount (29) during the second quarter of an NFL football game against the Miami Dolphins at Hard Rock Stadium. (Reinhold Matay)

There is mutual interest between the Giants and free agent running back LeGarrette Blount, and a deal could be made before this weekend's NFL Draft, according to Ian Rapoport of NFL Network.

Blount appeared in 16 games for the Patriots last season and carried the ball 299 times for 1,161 yards, averaging 3.9 yards per carry, and a league-leading 18 rushing touchdowns (the highest rushing touchdown total for any NFL player since Adrian Peterson in 2011).

With New England's recent signings of RB Mike Gillislee and RB Rex Burkheard this offseason, it seems likely that Blount's career with the Patriots is over.

Tags: Orleans Darkwa, Paul Perkins, Shane Vereen
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New York Giants wide receiver Odell Beckham (13) takes the field for action against the Philadelphia Eagles at Lincoln Financial Field. (Bill Streicher)
New York Giants wide receiver Odell Beckham (13) takes the field for action against the Philadelphia Eagles at Lincoln Financial Field. (Bill Streicher)

After it was reported that the Giants plan to pick up his fifth-year optionOdell Beckham, Jr. vowed to work harder than he ever has before to be the very best player he can be.

"Just wanna say today I woke up feeling extremely blessed. The start of a new chapter in my life began this [past] week," Beckham wrote on his verified Twitter account. "I will be workin harder than I ever have, to be the best that I ever have been. I'm more motivated now then I have ever been."

Beckham, 24. is entering the final year of his rookie contract, and the fifth-year option for the 2018 season will pay him the average salary of the third-through-25th highest paid wide receivers in the NFL, which is currently estimated to be around $8 million.

Tags: Odell Beckham Jr.
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 (Frank Franklin I/AP)
(Frank Franklin I/AP)

During his pre-draft press conference last week, Giants GM Jerry Reese used the phrase "best player available" nine different times. He made it clear, as he does every year, that will be the Giants' philosophy when they make their first-round draft pick.

And this year, he might really mean it.

Normally, "best player available" is a bit of a myth. The Giants, like most teams, almost always make their selections with "need" in mind, especially in the first round. They've done that with almost every first-round pick over the last two decades, to at least some degree. Even Reese admitted "You're always trying to tie 'best player available' with what our needs are."

The problem is that this year, one team source said "We don't have a ton of needs" -- and definitely none that match up well with the players who'll be available when they make the 23rd overall selection. They know they need help on the offensive line, but most scouts believe this is the weakest class of linemen (especially top of the class) in years. They know they need a play-making tight end, but the best one -- maybe even the best two -- might not reach them...

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Giants, Jets eye tight ends 00:05:01
Ralph Vacchiano and Tony Pauline discuss whether the Giants or Jets will select a tight end in the NFL Draft.

Ralph Vacchiano and Tony Pauline discuss whether the Giants or Jets will select a tight end in the NFL Draft.

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 (Noah K. Murray)
(Noah K. Murray)

The Giants have nine days to make a big decision about Odell Beckham, Jr.'s future -- whether they'll bring him back for 2018 or let him hit the open market.

And yeah, that's really not much of a tough decision at all.

There is no doubt at all that the Giants will exercise their "fifth-year option" on Beckham's rookie contract before the May 3 deadline - possibly as soon as this week. "Of course we will," said one team source. It's a no-brainer decision for an all-pro receiver who's on a Hall of Fame pace through his first three NFL seasons and is still only 24 years old.

Still, for whatever reason, Giants GM Jerry Reese wouldn't commit to that fifth-year option just yet (and neither, by the way, would co-owner John Mara at the NFL owners meetings last month). There's no indication at all that the Giants won't pick up the option, but Reese left the possibility open nonetheless...

Tags: Odell Beckham Jr., Ralph Vacchiano
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Christian McCaffrey highlights 00:01:10
SNY.tv takes a look at the best plays of former Stanford running back Christian McCaffrey.

The Giants are interested in drafting former Stanford running back Christian McCaffrey, according to the New York Post.

McCaffrey, seen as a versatile option out of the backfield, averaged 6.3 yards per carry in 2016 and scored 13 touchdowns. In 2015, McCaffrey's 3,864 all-purpose yards were the most in a season in NCAA history. He was named the AP College Football Player of the Year that same year.

His father, Ed McCaffrey, was drafted by the Giants in the third round of the 1991 NFL Draft.

The Giants have the 23rd overall pick in the draft, but it is not yet clear whether or not McCaffrey would still be remaining on the draft board that late in the first round. If the Giants are able to draft him, they would reportedly seek to utilize his versatility by weaving him into both offense and special teams, according to the New York Post. They would aim to give him about 20 touches per game through carries, catches, kick returns, and punt returns.

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The Class of 2017: Quarterbacks 00:05:06
SNY NFL Insider Ralph Vacchiano and draft analyst Tony Pauline take a close look at the quarterbacks available in the 2017 NFL Draft

Ralph Vacchiano Facebook | Twitter | Archive

After not doing a Mock Draft in about a decade, I've now done two versions in less than three weeks - with a third (and final) version still to come. So with eight days to go until the draft, here's my SNY Mock Draft, version 2.0. The information comes from NFL sources, draft experts, and in some cases my own mind:

1. Cleveland Browns - Myles Garrett, DE, Texas A&M

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Forecasting the Giants' pick 00:05:21
Ralph Vacchiano and Tony Pauline predict whom the Giants might take at No. 23 overall in the upcoming NFL Draft.

Ralph Vacchiano and Tony Pauline predict whom the Giants might take at No. 23 overall in the upcoming NFL Draft.

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New York Giants offensive tackle Ereck Flowers (74) during the game against the Green Bay Packers at Lambeau Field. (Jeff Hanisch)
New York Giants offensive tackle Ereck Flowers (74) during the game against the Green Bay Packers at Lambeau Field. (Jeff Hanisch)

Ralph Vacchiano, SNY.tv

For the moment, Ereck Flowers appears to be the Giants left tackle by default. But Jerry Reese made it clear that is definitely subject to change.

The Giants general manager said the team will "experiment" with their offensive line lineup this spring in search of their still-to-be-determined starting five. At the moment, they have no obvious lineup, but they do have several players with the flexibility to play multiple positions.

Tags: Bobby Hart, Ereck Flowers, John Jerry, Justin Pugh, Weston Richburg, Ralph Vacchiano
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New York Giants center Weston Richburg (70) during the second half at Raymond James Stadium. (Kim Klement)
New York Giants center Weston Richburg (70) during the second half at Raymond James Stadium. (Kim Klement)

Ralph Vacchiano, SNY.tv

Weston Richburg was one of the bright spots on the Giants' offensive line last season, but that's not the way he saw it. The Giants center wasn't happy with his overall performance, which was due in part to an injury that he never revealed.

Richburg said he tore ligaments in his right hand in the Giants' second preseason game. He played the entire season with the injury, which eventually needed surgery.

Tags: Justin Pugh, Odell Beckham Jr., Weston Richburg, Ralph Vacchiano
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New York Giants defensive end Jason Pierre-Paul (90) celebrates a sack of New Orleans Saints quarterback Drew Brees (9) during the first half at MetLife Stadium. (Ed Mulholland)
New York Giants defensive end Jason Pierre-Paul (90) celebrates a sack of New Orleans Saints quarterback Drew Brees (9) during the first half at MetLife Stadium. (Ed Mulholland)

Ralph Vacchiano, SNY.tv

In the last two full games Jason Pierre-Paul played last season, he was a monster. He forced two fumbles, he had 5 ½ sacks. He was everywhere on the field, as disruptive as he had been in years.

"I was just getting warmed up, man," JPP said on Thursday. "I was just starting to get on a roll."

Tags: Jason Pierre-Paul, Olivier Vernon, Ralph Vacchiano
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GEICO SportsNite: Eli Manning 00:01:52
Ralph Vacchiano weighs in on the latest news regarding the memorabilia scandal accusations surrounding Giants quarterback Eli Manning
Tags: Eli Manning

Sep 18, 2016; East Rutherford, NJ, USA; The New York Giants take the field before the start of their NFL game against the New Orleans Saints at MetLife Stadium.  (Ed Mulholland (USA Today))
Sep 18, 2016; East Rutherford, NJ, USA; The New York Giants take the field before the start of their NFL game against the New Orleans Saints at MetLife Stadium. (Ed Mulholland (USA Today))

Coming off their most successful season since their last Super Bowl championship, the Giants hope to get off to a fast start this season. But the schedule-makers didn't make that easy to do.  

The Giants will not only open the season on the road - and in Dallas for the third straight opener - but they'll be on the road for most of the first month of the 2017 season. Three of their first four games and four of their first six are away games. And to add to the challenge, three of those are in prime time. 

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 (Jasen Vinlove (USA Today))
(Jasen Vinlove (USA Today))

Ralph Vacchiano Facebook | Twitter | Archive

Jerry Reese was the one who first said back in January that the Giants would use this offseason to at least think about finding Eli Manning's successor. And he was serious about taking a look. In fact, the Giants GM said "I probably looked at more quarterbacks this time" than he has in year's past.

That doesn't mean the Giants will draft their next franchise quarterback next week, though.

Tags: Eli Manning, Geno Smith, Ralph Vacchiano
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 (Jeff Hanisch)
(Jeff Hanisch)

The Giants will open the 2017 season in Dallas on Sunday night, September 10, and wrap things up in Week 17 on New Year's Eve against the Redskins at MetLife Stadium.

The Giants' full schedule, which an NFL source confirmed to SNY's Ralph Vacchiano, is as follows:

Sept. 10: @ Dallas (Sunday night football)

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Manning denies allegations 00:03:31
The DNL panel discusses the Eli Manning memorabilia controversy after he vehemently denied the allegations to reporters earlier today.

Ralph Vacchiano Facebook | Twitter | Archive

An angry and hurt Eli Manning defended himself against allegations that he participated in a phony memorabilia scheme, insisting "I've done nothing wrong, and I have nothing to hide."

Speaking out on the subject for the first time -- and letting his emotions show for one of the few times in his 13-year NFL career -- Manning opened up his press conference on Thursday morning by proclaiming his innocence. He said that emails that purportedly show him participating in the scheme -- filed in Bergen County Superior Court as part of a civil racketeering suit against him, the Giants and their equipment managers -- were "taken out of context."

Tags: Eli Manning, Ralph Vacchiano
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New York Giants cornerback Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie and New York Giants cornerback Eli Apple celebrate after an interception against the Detroit Lions during second half at MetLife Stadium. (Noah K. Murray/USA Today Sports Images)
New York Giants cornerback Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie and New York Giants cornerback Eli Apple celebrate after an interception against the Detroit Lions during second half at MetLife Stadium. (Noah K. Murray/USA Today Sports Images)

Latest Update (April 20)

11:30AM: The Giants will finish the preseason against the New England Patriots on Thursday, August 31 at 7:30 p.m. at Gillette Stadium, according to Jeff Howe of the Boston Herald.

 

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New York Giants wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr. (13) stands on the field prior to the Giants' game against the Washington Redskins at FedEx Field. (Geoff Burke)
New York Giants wide receiver Odell Beckham Jr. (13) stands on the field prior to the Giants' game against the Washington Redskins at FedEx Field. (Geoff Burke)

The Giants will take on the Redskins in Washington D.C. on Thanksgiving night, according to Jordan Raanan of ESPN.

The game will take place on Nov. 23, and represents New York's 15th Thanksgiving Day contest since 1926. 

The Giants last played on Thanksgiving in 2009 against the Denver Broncos.

Tags: Washington Redskins
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Sep 1, 2016; East Rutherford, NJ, USA;New York Giants defensive end Owa Odighizuwa (58) chasing down New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady (12) in the first half at MetLife Stadium.  (William Hauser (USA Today))
Sep 1, 2016; East Rutherford, NJ, USA;New York Giants defensive end Owa Odighizuwa (58) chasing down New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady (12) in the first half at MetLife Stadium. (William Hauser (USA Today))

If Owa Odighizuwa really did need time "to get away from the game," two weeks was apparently enough. 

The Giants defensive end, who appeared to be hinting about retirement back on April 3, was among the players in attendance for the first day of the Giants offseason workout program on Tuesday morning. And while that doesn't clear up the mystery of what the 25-year-old was tweeting about, it at least means that he's intent on continuing his NFL career. 

Tags: Devon Kennard, Eli Manning, Landon Collins, Odell Beckham Jr., Owa Odighizuwa, Shane Vereen, Sterling Shepard
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Njoku discusses the NFL draft 00:05:15
Miami tight end David Njoku discusses his senior season and how he is handling the pressure that comes with being a top draft pick.

 (Trevor Ruszkowski)
(Trevor Ruszkowski)

 

Ralph Vacchiano Facebook | Twitter | Archive

Here is the most up-to-date information on what the Giants have done during free agency, including contract details and salary cap information. The signing period will continue through the NFL draft and right up until the start of training camp in July, so bookmark this page and keep checking back for frequent updates.

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New York Giants defensive end Kerry Wynn (72) reacts after recovering a fumble by the Carolina Panthers during the fourth quarter at MetLife Stadium. (Brad Penner)
New York Giants defensive end Kerry Wynn (72) reacts after recovering a fumble by the Carolina Panthers during the fourth quarter at MetLife Stadium. (Brad Penner)

Restricted free agent DE Kerry Wynn will sign his tender with the Giants and participate in the team's offseason program, according to Jordan Raanan of ESPN.

In 14 games last season, Wynn made 12 combined tackles to go with 0.5 sacks and a fumble recovery.

Wynn will earn $1.797 million for the 2017 season. The contract is not guaranteed.

Tags: Kerry Wynn, Owa Odighizuwa
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GEICO SportsNite: ODB program 00:01:19
At MetLife Stadium, Odell Beckham Jr. hosted the Van Cortlandt Titans, who were the winners of Dunkin' Donuts Catch of a Lifetime Program.
Tags: Odell Beckham Jr.

Wisconsin Badgers offensive lineman Ryan Ramczyk speaks to the media during the 2017 NFL Combine at the Indiana Convention Center. (Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports)
Wisconsin Badgers offensive lineman Ryan Ramczyk speaks to the media during the 2017 NFL Combine at the Indiana Convention Center. (Brian Spurlock-USA TODAY Sports)

Ralph Vacchiano, SNY.tv

The world of mock drafters still believes the Giants will select an offensive lineman in the first round later this month, but it's not quite as convinced as it once was.

As of Monday, 53 percent of the 32 mock drafts examined by SNY have the Giants taking an offensive lineman in the first round, which begins in just 10 days. That's down from 60 percent just two weeks ago. The favorite player, though, remains the same. The consensus is that they'll take Wisconsin tackle Ryan Ramczyk, who was selected in 12 of the 32 mock drafts.

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Louisiana Lafayette Ragin Cajuns running back Elijah McGuire (15) runs the ball against the Kentucky Wildcats in the first half at Commonwealth Stadium. (Mark Zerof)
Louisiana Lafayette Ragin Cajuns running back Elijah McGuire (15) runs the ball against the Kentucky Wildcats in the first half at Commonwealth Stadium. (Mark Zerof)

Louisiana-Lafayette running back Elijah McGuire is visiting with the Giants on Monday, according to Ian Rapoport of NFL Network.

McGuire ran for 1,127 yards on 232 carries, averaging 4.9 yards per carry, and seven touchdowns during his senior year last season, adding 29 receptions for 238 yards and two receiving touchdowns.

The 5-foot-10, 214-pound running back was named the 2014 Sun Belt Player of the Year, along with the 2014 Sun Belt Offensive Player of the Year.

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Tight end David Njoku highlights 00:01:34
SNY.tv takes a look at the best plays from former Miami Hurricanes tight end David Njoku.

The New York Giants' scheduled meeting with Miami tight end David Njoku was canceled, according to ESPN's Jordan Raanan.

Njoku, 20, was scheduled to meet with the Giants for a second time on Monday, according to The Record's Art Stapleton, but instead the New Jersey native will meet with the New York Jets.

Njoku is expected to be a first-round pick in the NFL Draft later this month. He had a formal interview with the Giants at the NFL Combine in February.

With the Hurricanes last season, Njoku had 43 receptions ånd eight touchdowns.

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Jacksonville Jaguars defensive end Jared Odrick (75) during the first half at EverBank Field. (Kim Klement)
Jacksonville Jaguars defensive end Jared Odrick (75) during the first half at EverBank Field. (Kim Klement)

With Jonathan Hankins now a member of the Colts, the Giants have expressed interest in free agent defensive lineman Jared Odrickaccording to Jordan Raanan of ESPN.

Odrick played six games with the Jaguars last season, recording one sack, one forced fumble, and 12 combined tackles.

The 29-year old had at least 4.5 sacks in four of the previos six seasons between the Dolphins and Jaguars, and has the capability and skillset to play both outside as a run-stopping defensive end or inside as a pass-rushing tackle.

Tags: Damon Harrison, Jay Bromley
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Daily News Live: Eli scheme? 00:03:46
The DNL panel discusses a possible controversy surrounding Eli Manning and whether he was involved in false game-worn memorabilia scheme.

An e-mail from Giants QB Eli Manning proves that he helped defraud collectors who were led to believe they were receiving game-used equipment, according to the New York Post.

Manning allegedly asked equipment manager Joe Skiba on April 27, 2010 to obtain equipment that appeared as if it was used in games. "2 helmets that can pass as used. That is it, Eli," Manning said in the e-mail.

Within 20 minutes, Manning then sent an e-mail to his marketing agent telling him that he "Should be able to get them for tomorrow."

Tags: Eli Manning
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 (Kevin Hoffman)
(Kevin Hoffman)

Ralph Vacchiano Facebook | Twitter | Archive

The Giants wanted to bring Johnathan Hankins back and they did all the right things to try to make that happen. They made him a generous offer. They patiently waited for his response. They didn't seriously pursue other defensive tackles or (for the most part) publicly pressure him to take their deal. They let their offer sit there and gave him all the space he needed until he decided to make up his mind.

In the end, he found his riches elsewhere. They always knew that was the risk.

Tags: Damon Harrison, Jason Pierre-Paul, Jay Bromley, Johnathan Hankins, Olivier Vernon, Ralph Vacchiano
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 (Brad Penner/USA Today Sports Images)
(Brad Penner/USA Today Sports Images)

Free agent DT Johnathan Hankins has agreed to a four-year deal with the Colts worth $30 million, reports Adam Schefter of ESPN.

Hankins, who visited with the Colts on Tuesday, will get $14.5 million guaranteed.

The Giants' offer to Hankins was for $28 million over four years, according to Paul Schwartz of the NY Post.

Tags: Jason Pierre-Paul, Johnathan Hankins
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 (Trevor Ruszkowski)
(Trevor Ruszkowski)

The Giants have expressed interest in Jackson State LB Javancy Jonesreports Patricia Traina of the Journal Inquirer.

Jones played in 34 combined games for Jackson State form 2013 to 2015, but played in just three games last season.

The 6' 2", 230-pounder played in the East-West Shrine game after the season, notching four tackles (including one for a loss).

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Wisconsin Badgers offensive lineman Ryan Ramczyk (65) prepares to block in the third quarter against the Western Michigan Broncos at AT&T Stadium. (Tim Heitman)
Wisconsin Badgers offensive lineman Ryan Ramczyk (65) prepares to block in the third quarter against the Western Michigan Broncos at AT&T Stadium. (Tim Heitman)

Wisconsin offensive lineman Ryan Ramczyk is visiting with the Giants today, according to Kimberly Martin of Newsday.

Ramczyk attended Wisconsin-Stevens Point, where he was a two-time all-conference pick at left tackle, before deciding to transfer to Wisconsin-Madison.

After sitting out the 2015 season, Ramczyk started every game at left tackle for the Badgers in 2016, earning All-Big Ten honors along with Associated Press All-American acolades.

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Eli Manning on Giants QB future 00:01:06
New York Giants quarterback Eli Manning discusses the possibility of the team looking for his potential successor in the NFL Draft.

Ralph Vacchiano Facebook | Twitter | Archive

If the Giants want to draft Eli Manning's eventual replacement later this month, that's just "fine" with him.

Manning, the 36-year-old quarterback, said he had no issues with the Giants pondering their future at his position, even if it means he'd have to work with his successor for several seasons. He said its all "just part of it". And no matter who the Giants draft, he knows he still has to do his job.

Tags: Eli Manning, Ryan Nassib
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 (Vincent Carchietta)
(Vincent Carchietta)

Ralph Vacchiano | Facebook | Twitter | Archive

When Ben McAdoo was asked two weeks ago if there was any way Geno Smith could be the eventual heir to Eli Manning, the Giants head coach created a few headlines when he answered "I can't see why not."

John Mara, though, can see why not -- or at least why not yet.

Tags: Eli Manning, Geno Smith
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GEICO SportsNite: Eli Manning 00:01:09
Eli Manning received the Ernie Accorsi Humanitarian Award at National Football Foundation Awards dinner.

Ralph Vacchiano, SNY.tv

Eli Manning has played with plenty of talented receivers in the last decade - from Steve Smith to Victor Cruz to Hakeem Nicks to Odell Beckham. But for the last eight years something big has been missing from his targets.

Size.

That has mattered more than the 6-foot-4 Giants quarterback has admitted throughout the years, but this year that has changed. For the first time since the 6-5 Plaxico Burress was released, the Giants have a truly viable big receiver. They signed the 6-4 Brandon Marshall in February, and Manning is excited as everyone else in the organization seems to be to have a truly big target on his side.

Tags: Brandon Marshall, Eli Manning, Odell Beckham Jr., Ralph Vacchiano
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Aug 12, 2016; East Rutherford, NJ, USA; New York Giants wide receiver Dwayne Harris (17) passes under pressure form New York Giants defensive end Owa Odighizuwa (58) during the first half of the preseason game at MetLife Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports (Vincent Carchietta)
Aug 12, 2016; East Rutherford, NJ, USA; New York Giants wide receiver Dwayne Harris (17) passes under pressure form New York Giants defensive end Owa Odighizuwa (58) during the first half of the preseason game at MetLife Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports (Vincent Carchietta)

The mystery of Owa Odighizuwa is still mostly a mystery, but at least one small part of it was cleared up on Thursday night: He's still a member of the Giants and he's not retiring -- at least, probably not.

That's about all Giants co-owner John Mara was willing to offer on the subject before he attended the "Elite Eleven Reception" at the New York Athletic Club in Manhattan.

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Wisconsin Badgers offensive lineman Ryan Ramczyk (65) during the Lambeau Field College Classic against the LSU Tigers at Lambeau Field. (Jeff Hanisch)
Wisconsin Badgers offensive lineman Ryan Ramczyk (65) during the Lambeau Field College Classic against the LSU Tigers at Lambeau Field. (Jeff Hanisch)

Ralph Vacchiano, SNY.tv

I don't remember doing a mock draft any time in the last 20 or so years (though I did find internet evidence of one in 2010). I'm still interpreting my record in all the other years to be perfect -- no misses. But, as they say, "No guts, no glory". It's time to put that streak on the line with my first Mock Draft for SNY. It won't be my last, either. I'll be revising this up until Draft Week. So keep checking back. This is simply version 1.0:

1. Cleveland Browns - Myles Garrett, DE, Texas A&M
Yeah, they need a quarterback, but he's the best player in the draft and they have a decent young QB on the roster. Plus they have the No. 12 pick (so stay tuned).

2. San Francisco 49ers - Solomon Thomas, DE Stanford
They need a quarterback too, but they have a new coach and GM on long-term deals. They can wait until there's a better QB crop.

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 (Jeff Hanisch)
(Jeff Hanisch)

 

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Odell Beckham, Jr. may have skipped Eli Manning's annual minicamp at Duke University, but the Giants quarterback still managed to draw quite a crowd.

Receivers Brandon MarshallSterling ShepardTavarres King, and Roger Lewis were all in Durham, N.C., this week - as several of them documented on Instagram -- as Manning held his traditional offseason retreat and a few days of workouts and drills. They were joined, based on the photos they shared, by tight ends Will TyeJerell Adams, and Rhett Ellison, along with quarterback Josh Johnson and running back Shaun Draughn.

Tags: Brandon Marshall, Eli Manning, Odell Beckham Jr., Sterling Shepard, Will Tye
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Will Tony Romo succeed in TV? 00:06:13
The Loud Mouths guys discuss Tony Romo deciding to retire from the NFL and taking Phil Simms' spot in the CBS broadcast booth.

While discussing his retirement from football and move to television, former Cowboys QB Tony Romo reflected on the "special relationship" he has with Giants QB Eli Manning.

"I feel like it's one of my favorite relationships in the NFL. I don't have a ton, I've never really talked to opponents too much," Romo said on a conference call Tuesday. "I've always felt a weird competitive part of that. I feel like there was a friendly rivalry that extended on that field. Eli's been so good for over a decade. I had to play really, really good ball to beat him."

Romo's second career NFL apperance came against Manning and the Giants. The former Dallas quarterback replaced Drew Bledsoe in the second half of a 36-22 Giants win on Oct. 23, 2006. Romo became the Cowboys' starting quarterback the following week.

Tags: Eli Manning
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Sep 1, 2016; East Rutherford, NJ, USA;New York Giants defensive end Owa Odighizuwa (58) chasing down New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady (12) in the first half at MetLife Stadium.  (William Hauser (USA Today))
Sep 1, 2016; East Rutherford, NJ, USA;New York Giants defensive end Owa Odighizuwa (58) chasing down New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady (12) in the first half at MetLife Stadium. (William Hauser (USA Today))

 

Ralph Vacchiano Facebook | Twitter | Archive

Maybe Owa Odighizuwa isn't leaving the NFL after all?

Tags: Owa Odighizuwa, Ralph Vacchiano
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Tight end David Njoku highlights 00:01:34
SNY.tv takes a look at the best plays from former Miami Hurricanes tight end David Njoku.

Ralph Vacchiano, SNY.tv

It's the home stretch, with just a little more than three weeks to go before the start of the NFL draft. So here's SNY's weekly look at the top players on board for the Giants as they prepare to make the 23rd overall pick on April 27:

1. OT Ryan Ramczyk, Wisconsin - If Bolles isn't the top tackle on the board, then it's likely this 6-6, 314-pounder. For all the reasons listed above, he figures to be in play on the Giants' board too. The only question, really, is whether either of these two - or both - will be available at 23. The offensive tackle class is generally considered weak, but it's such a primary position that one figures to go in the Top 10 or 15. And sometimes when one goes, more go (The old "Dance of the Elephants," as the late George Young used to call it). (Last report: 2)

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 (Tim Heitman)
(Tim Heitman)

Ralph Vacchiano Facebook | Twitter | Archive

The Giants are going to take an offensive lineman in the first round of the NFL draft, if you believe the experts. In fact, they've even figured out which one.

An impressive 60 percent of the 30 mock drafts examined by SNY have the Giants taking a lineman with the 23rd overall pick, and 13 of those 18 believe the one they'll take is Wisconsin's Ryan Ramczyk. That 43 percent of the mock drafts have zeroed in on the same player is a remarkable consensus considering there are still more than three weeks to go until the first-round begins.

Beyond that consensus, though, there was uncertainty with 14 players at seven different positions being mocked to the Giants -- including two quarterbacks. That variety is due partly to the fact that it's hard to forecast a team picking that low in the draft so long before the draft begins. It's also because the Giants, despite coming off an 11-5 season, still have plenty of needs...

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Texas Tech Red Raiders quarterback Patrick Mahomes (5) drops back to pass against the Kansas Jayhawks in the first half at Jones AT&T Stadium. (Michael C. Johnson)
Texas Tech Red Raiders quarterback Patrick Mahomes (5) drops back to pass against the Kansas Jayhawks in the first half at Jones AT&T Stadium. (Michael C. Johnson)

Giants head coach Ben McAdoo is on hand at the Texas Tech Pro Day to watch quarterback prospect Patrick Mahomes IIaccording to Andrew Groover of NFL Network.

This is the first time McAdoo has been confirmed at a Pro Day since he took over as head coach prior to last season.

McAdoo also met with Mahomes yesterday in advance of the quarterback's Pro Day, per a report from Mike Garafolo of NFL Network.

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Nov 20, 2016; East Rutherford, NJ, USA; New York Giants head coach Ben McAdoo coaches against the Chicago Bears during the fourth quarter at MetLife Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)
Nov 20, 2016; East Rutherford, NJ, USA; New York Giants head coach Ben McAdoo coaches against the Chicago Bears during the fourth quarter at MetLife Stadium. Mandatory Credit: Brad Penner-USA TODAY Sports (Brad Penner)

Ralph Vacchiano, SNY.tv

Click here to read Part I of the Giants Notebook.

One of the biggest criticisms of the Ben McAdoo offense last year - besides his play-calling - was the fact that they used "11 personnel" (three receivers, one tight end, one running back) on more than 90 percent of their plays. It led to cries that the Giants were too predictable and not nearly imaginative enough.

Tags: B.J. Goodson, Devon Kennard, J.T. Thomas, Jonathan Casillas, Keenan Robinson, Nikita Whitlock, Orleans Darkwa, Paul Perkins, Shane Vereen, Ralph Vacchiano
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 (Brad Penner/USA Today Sports Images)
(Brad Penner/USA Today Sports Images)

Ralph Vacchiano Facebook | Twitter | Archive

The longer Johnathan Hankins remains unsigned, the more likely it seems that he'll return to the Giants. And if he does, credit the patient approach of GM Jerry Reese and his bosses. Because they read the market right, and played this perfectly.

They could've jumped to find a replacement for the 25-year-old Hankins, or tried to make him move by threatening to pull their offer. Instead they made him what a team source said they believe is a very fair, very lucrative multi-year offer before free agency began. Then they left it there on the table, convinced nobody would top it and that Hankins' agent, Kevin Poston, would badly overplay his hand.

Tags: Brandon Marshall, Eli Manning, Jay Bromley, Johnathan Hankins, Paul Perkins, Ralph Vacchiano
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 (Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports)
(Mark J. Rebilas-USA TODAY Sports)

Ralph Vacchiano, SNY.TV

PHOENIX - The Giants may not have made the kind of free-agency splash that they made last season, but they have spent the last few days positively glowing about the addition of Brandon Marshall. To them, the addition of the 6-4 receiver is a big deal.

A really, really big deal.

"There are a lot of advantages to having a bigger receiver on the outside," Giants coach Ben McAdoo said on Tuesday afternoon at the NFL Owners Meetings at the Arizona Biltmore Hotel. "You can throw it up, especially with someone like Brandon with his strength and his catch radius. He almost didn't fit through my doorway when he came into the building. He's a big man. He's like a tight end body out there. He's a big, strong man."

Tags: Brandon Marshall, Ralph Vacchiano
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Is Geno a worthy successor? 00:03:35
Jon Hein and Dan Graca react to Ben McAdoo's statement that the Giants won't rule out Geno Smith being Eli Manning's successor.

Ralph Vacchiano Facebook | Twitter | Archive

PHOENIX -- The New York Giants are admittedly on the lookout for Eli Manning's eventual successor. Is it possible they already found him when they signed Geno Smith?

It is, according to Giants coach Ben McAdoo, who raved about the former Jets starter during a 45-minute interview at the NFL Owners Meetings at the Arizona Biltmore Hotel. He said it was "very exciting" to add a player as promising as the 26-year-old former second-round pick.

Tags: Eli Manning, Geno Smith, Ralph Vacchiano
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New York Giants offensive tackle Ereck Flowers (74) during the game against the Green Bay Packers at Lambeau Field. (Jeff Hanisch)
New York Giants offensive tackle Ereck Flowers (74) during the game against the Green Bay Packers at Lambeau Field. (Jeff Hanisch)

Ralph Vacchiano, SNY.tv

PHOENIX - It's looking more and more every day like the embattled Ereck Flowers will keep his job as the Giants' left tackle. And if he does, it sounds like he's got Ben McAdoo's support.

"I think one of the best games Ereck played all year was the playoff game, the last game of the season," McAdoo said on Tuesday at the Arizona Biltmore Hotel, site of the NFL Owners Meetings. "He's working hard on his technique. I'm pretty confident that he's working pretty hard right now at being a better player, putting a lot of time and energy in to it. You get to see his face a lot. He's in and out of the building a lot. I know he loves the game and I have confidence in Ereck."

McAdoo's endorsement was undoubtedly sincere, after what was a very rough sophomore season for the 22-year-old Flowers. But it also was out of necessity, since it doesn't appear that the Giants have any other viable options beyond their former first-round pick. Giants GM Jerry Reese had indicated after last season that they'd explore the idea of moving Flowers to another position. But so far they haven't brought another left tackle in to compete.

Tags: Ereck Flowers, John Jerry, Justin Pugh, Weston Richburg, Ralph Vacchiano
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