|Excerpt: "Throughout the seven rounds and 254 picks of the 2013 NFL draft, there were a lot of players with very impressive college careers welcomed into the professional ranks. And as I review all of the selections now, I'm reminded of one very important fact: All of those college titles, stats and accolades mean precisely zero in terms of their future in the NFL. The slate is wiped clean. From now on, the success of every player in this draft, be it No. 1 overall pick Eric Fisher or Mr. Irrelevant Justice Cunningham, will be determined by how hard they work and apply themselves on the pro playing fields.
As we reflect on the draft, we have a tendency to weight the higher picks more than players selected in later rounds. It's a natural inclination, but it's a faulty one. While they may not have stood out as much as their top-round counterparts in college, they have the same opportunity to succeed in the NFL. Just ask Joe Montana. Just ask Tom Brady. Just ask Alfred Morris.
In reviewing my favorite picks from the 2013 draft, that's a factor I keep at the top of my mind. And it's a big reason I think that the New York Giants landed a tremendous asset by taking Syracuse QB Ryan Nassib.
As I mentioned before the draft, there were no quarterbacks that I believed warranted an early selection. But that doesn't mean the position is devoid of talent. Just that these prospects need time to develop and make use of some of their tools and ability. With Nassib, he's going to get precisely that.
Playing behind Eli Manning, there will be no rush in his development. He can sit back, watch and learn, all while providing the Giants with a terrific safety net in the event of an injury to Eli and perhaps even proving to be Manning's successor.
By Nassib's third year in the pros, Manning will be 35, an age at which statistics have shown QBs usually start to break down physically. Their skills may not have diminished, but the accumulation of the punishment they've endured starts to take its toll and injury becomes far more common. By the time that starts to impact Eli, Nassib should be experienced to the point where the Giants will feel comfortable inserting him into a game and still feeling they have better than a 50-percent chance to win.
It may have seemed like a strange pick because quarterback isn't an immediate need for the Giants. But this pick was made with the long view in mind. And I think it was a very savvy selection." Read more...