Plan of Attack

One thing is certain. The Giants will need to clear some cap room. Not only do decisions have to be made on whom they are going to bring in, but they also need to get busy with trimming the roster of dead wood and possibly renegotiating contracts to create maximum cap space. <BR><BR>

Obviously, there will not be enough money to do all the things that need to be done so a prioritized plan coordinating free agency with the draft would be essential. Through Week 14 of the season the Giants would be picking in the 8th position in the draft. It doesn't look like they will win any more games this season so that position should only improve They could easily have a pick in the top five. Here is how we would approach the coming offseason.

1. Offensive Line - Priority: Extremely High. While this is absolutely the top priority, it may also be the easiest to correct. Rich Seubert and Luke Petitgout are keepers. They can get by with Chris Bober, but if they have the chance to upgrade they should. The rest should compete for backup roles. We would not mass draft to the offensive line. They do not need more rookies and street free agents. They proved that doesn't work. They need veteran attention. We would however, consider a blue-chip tackle like Robert Gallery of Iowa. If we got Gallery in the first round, we would not draft any more linemen. We would plug Gallery in at left tackle, move Petitgout to right tackle and then try to sign two of the following four linemen: Mike Flynn from Baltimore, Lewis Kelly from Minnesota, Kendyl Jacox from New Orleans and/or Spencer Folau, also from the Saints.

2. Linebacker - Priority: High. This is where we would consider our big bucks acquisition. Julian Peterson would be a tremendous addition. He would be the playmaker the defense desperately needs. The process would be simplified if Nick Greisen were ready to take over at MLB. We would re-sign Brandon Short and look at him in the middle. Since the free agent LB class is not overly exciting, we would look to draft a linebacker in the early rounds. It is still early in the draft evaluation process, but a LB like Teddy Lehman from Oklahoma in round two or perhaps Josh Buhl from Kansas State in round three would help.

3. Defensive Back - Priority: High. We would play the hand as dealt at cornerback, but we would like to add at least one safety. Greg Wesley from Kansas City would be high on our list. If he were not affordable we would turn our attention toward Reggie Tongue from Seattle and Terrance Shaw from Oakland. Shaun Williams gets one more year to pick up his game. Hopefully with new coaching he will rise to the occasion. We would also factor the following college safeties into the mix. If Miami's underclassman Sean Taylor entered the draft he would have to be considered along with OT Gallery in round one, but if both were available we would take the OT. Brandon Everage from Oklahoma, Bob Sanders from Iowa and Eric Pruitt from Southern Mississippi would be second- and third-round considerations at safety.

4. Tight End - Priority: Moderate Plus. It is so obvious they miss Dan Campbell and his type of game, which is great blocking and decent receiving. They could use those skills in conjunction with Jeremy Shockey. Neither Marcellus Rivers nor Visanthe Shiancoe brings the type of blocking they need. Our plan would be to sign Jason Dunn, a relatively inexpensive blocking tight end from Kansas City.

5. Running Back - Priority: Moderate. We would add a power running back. He would be one that was good around the goal line and in short yardage. He would also be able to take some of the burden away from Tiki Barber. The best way to go here seems to be the draft. We would look at Brandon Miree from Pittsburgh as a possibility to fill that role.

6. Defensive Line - Priority: Low. They should be good enough to get through with what they have if Umenyiora and Joseph come though. However, if they fail to get a big-name playmaker at linebacker or safety then we would consider spending the money on Jevon Kearse from Tennessee, but only as a last resort.

7. Quarterback - Priority: Low. Jesse Palmer gets another chance, but we would bring in some competition most likely through the draft. A mid- to late-round QB could be someone like Luke McCown from Louisiana Tech or Jeff Smoker from Michigan State.

8. Wide Receiver - Priority: Low. We are extremely worried about Tim Carter. We are fearful he is going to be one of those players they just can't keep on the field. No free agents or high draft picks are needed here, but we would bring in some street free agents to compete in camp.


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