Did the Giants make a smart move by selecting defensive back Prince Amukamara?
Let us take a look at our experts thoughts on Prince Amukamara:
Wonder: Brutally hard evaluation. Everything you look for. He’ll go top 10 in the draft, but too high for me. Body of Revis but does not transition well from the backpedal to the sprint.
Pete: I have problems here. Physical talent. That he did not have any interceptions his senior year really bothers me. Good player cannot recommend him higher.
Looking at Wonder’s and Pete’s draft boards, Prince Amukamara’s name is highlighted in red. In both of their vetting of draft prospects, Prince was a bottom five value versus consensus player. In other words, both of our experts believe he is a player they disliked versus consensus. And both graded him as a THREE. A three grade equates to a solid starter. Generally speaking, when both of our experts agree on a player, the confidence in their evaluation is increased.
Interestingly, Bill Parcells shares Pete’s skepticism about Amukamara. In his Draft Confidential program which aired on ESPN, Parcells mentioned Prince’s short arms as a concern. Because he has a short arm span, this was a major reason he did not have any interceptions his senior year. This was corroborated by the Sun Sentinel’s analysis of Amukamara. According to the Sun-Sentinel, he has short arms and small hands, which might explain why he didn’t record an interception as a senior. Another interesting tidbit from their analysis: Also gets caught with eyes in the backfield too often.
Therefore, the selection of Amukamara fits defensive coordinator Perry Fewell’s Tampa 2 scheme. The Giants obtained a player who can play off coverage. But remember Fewell’s scheme does not work against the top notch quarterbacks. Amukamara may get away with watching a mediocre quarterback’s eyes. However, the better quarterbacks (Peyton Manning, Drew Brees, Aaron Rodgers, and Tom Brady) will not give away any freebies.
In summary, the Giants added a player who can help improve their pass defense. But at what cost? Prior to the draft, we at UltimateNYG targeted pass defense, special teams, offensive line, and linebacker as areas of need. Despite having many positions to bolster, a beaming Tom Coughlin called Prince, “clearly the highest-rated player on the board.” Giants GM Jerry Reese added,“It happens like that sometimes in the draft — guys can fall right into your lap, and we think that’s what happened.” Let us hope they are correct.
Note- Thanks to GMC for their sponsorship of this blog at the Draft last night. Andy here, my quick takeaway is that those who think we stole the Brink’s truck are simply mistaken. Many who worked him out privately passed on him. The Giants did not work him out and took him. That Kiper and Mayock loved the guy and had him in their Top 10 is not the be-all-end-all. Our two draft analysts panned him (well before the draft), so this is as objective as you can possibly get. We had a ranking for him at 28 and 35. Shouldn’t that tell you something? He’ll be a good player, but don’t go thinking this is a home run. For those of you thinking he was a home run, you’ll get graded as draft analysts with a “1″ elite rating for the player. Our draft analysts are already on record as having him as a ’3′ solid starter. If he makes it to the pro bowl (’2′) it will be a push (without meeting a critical need, i.e. Castonzo at Tackle). If he makes it as a consistent impact player, then he is a “home run.” And if he is a solid starter like we project him to be, then this is a very normal and ordinary pick for Round 1, which averages a 3.5. Of course we leave room for our analysts to be wrong. But UltimateNYG’s analysts are here for a reason, to separate the facts from the noise. Mel Kiper is, quite frankly, a lot of the latter.