Ken Palmer: Let me guess, Paul, you're going to go out on a limb and suggest the Giants select Robert Gallery in the first round. Knowing you it might even turn into a Post 'exclusive' draft day morning. Sure a mountain of a man at left tackle for the next decade would be great. But the Giants need playmakers, you know, like the now-defunct ESPN show. Imagine someone on defense not named Strahan that could make opposing offenses worry. Safety Sean Taylor of Miami is the answer here.
Paul Schwartz: Yes, the Giants need plenty of help on defense but you take care of one problem at a time. With Robert Gallery, the Giants' major problem gets solved. Got it? Kenny, were you watching even a little bit last season, when Kerry Collins attempted to play quarterback from the fetal position? Did you pay any attention when opposing defensive ends used to call each other on their cell phones and say 'Let's meet at the Giants quarterback for lunch' and then keep the appointment? There are no band-aid cures at left tackle. You either have one or you don't. With Gallery, the Giants will have one.
KP: OK Paul, there's no doubt you know all about this football thing, what with attending a school like little 'ol Albany. One bad year while the guy was injured and Luke Petitgout turned into Greg Bishop? Sure the Giants desperately need line help; perhaps you should tell your boy Kerry to throw the ball sooner. But who cares if an improved offense continues to lose because no one on defense can do anything? At 235 pounds, Taylor is big enough to play linebacker. He's a solid tackler that can hit and cover and believe it or not, Paul, he even has great hands and might be the first Giant to record more than two INTs in a season in quite some time.
PS: Look, some things in life are easy. Getting into Penn State is easy (Mr. Palmer is living proof of that). Some things in life are hard. Calculus is hard. Solving the national debt is hard. Getting five minutes with Tom Coughlin is hard. This year's NFL Draft, from the Giants perspective, is not hard. It's understandable someone who spent too much time in State College can make something easy into something difficult, but don't over-think this one here. The Giants need a left tackle. Gallery is the best available left tackle in the draft. If he's there at No. 4, the Giants simply take him and move on, knowing that, barring an injury, they're set at that critical offensive line position for the next 10 years. Then they move Luke Petitgout over to right tackle and fix that spot as well. Neat and clean.
KP: Neat and clean? Sure doesn't make one think of the Giants defense, now does it? Omar Stoutmire grades out well game after game…yada, yada, yada…where are the picks? The forced fumbles? The Wills are very talented and Shaun Williams has to bounce back from last year. That said the Giants still need an impact defender. Some will say taking a safety at number four is too high. The Cowboys and their fans are sure glad that Dallas didn't hesitate to grab Roy Williams two years back with the eighth pick. Ever heard of him, Paul? Kerry Collins sure has.
PS: Taking a safety with the fourth overall pick is not sound thinking. It's too high. Sure, sure, Roy Williams might be a great player for the Cowboys, but that's an exception to this rule: You build a defense from the front first, then make sure you have enough quality cornerbacks to cover people. In Shaun Williams, the Giants already have a good safety that needs to play better and should now that Johnnie Lynn is no longer the coordinator. The Giants can find another safety in free agency. No. 4 is an impact spot in the draft and few safeties are true impact players.
KP: Sure glad you have all the answers, Paul. This was easier than I thought it would be. We both know that the Giants cannot afford to go another year with the type of defense they had last year. You can only blame Johnnie Lynn so much, and believe me I do. But the loss of Cornelius Griffin, Keith Hamilton, Brandon Short and the oh-so-annoying Dhani Jones countered by the addition of Carlos Emmons, Barrett Green and Fred Robbins isn't exactly a home run for the Giants. Actually it's barely even an upgrade. The Giants need Sean Taylor now. He's the best defensive player in the draft. He's the Giants' one and only choice.
PS: There are some draft experts who say that Gallery isn't as overwhelming a prospect as Tony Boselli was when Coughlin took him with his first-ever pick in Jacksonville. Big deal. Let's not focus on what Gallery isn't. He's 6-7 and 323 pounds and don't let that long hair and earring fool you. He's a terror. He played for Kirk Ferentz at Iowa in an NFL-style system and was man enough to be one of the few top-10 prospects to work out at the NFL Scouting Combine. "I am a competitor,'' Gallery explained, "and as a competitor there was no better chance to show what I've got.'' Got to love that attitude. The kid showed plenty. If the Giants get him, they'll be fortunate. And also a whole lot better.
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