Reese Sticks to His Mantra, Taking the Best Player Available

Jerry Reese

The Giants entertained some trades and then sweated out their turn last night, but got a player that GM Jerry Reese said would have made one of his mentors, George Young, smile.

George, I’m sure he’d smile about it. George (said) you win with big people. You win with big people and you’ve got to have them. We are going to have another young guy in our offensive line fold that we really like.”

Justin Pugh of Syracuse was the pick and he is the first offensive lineman taken in the first round by the Giants since Ernie Accorsi selected Notre Dame’s Luke Petitgout in 1999. That’s three Super Bowl appearances ago, for those counting. Before that, you have to go all the back to the Young era (1989) to find an OL taken in the first round by the Giants: C Brian Williams of Minnesota.

As I mentioned yesterday, Pugh was atop the Giants draft board. He wasn’t first, I’m sure, but when the time came for them to pick, Pugh was the best player left on their board.

He was the highest guy on our board, so we got value and the highest guy on our board,” said Reese. “You guys think I’m joking when I say that, but it’s absolutely true, the highest guy on our board.”

As for tonight in Rounds Two and Three, expect Reese to wait his turn, look over at the board and call in top name that has not yet been crossed off:

We think we will get — there are still a lot of good players left on the board. We think we will get a couple of more really good players to come in and contribute for us right away. And we will get guys in the fourth and fifth round as well that we hope can hit on some guys in those rows. But there are still a lot of good players up there.”

Anyone in particular?

“A good football player – that is what we would like to address; good football player.”