Jay Bromley had a nice little Friday night lined up for himself.
He was at a supermarket near Syracuse with his girlfriend picking up some juice and getting ready to rent a movie when those plans were interrupted. Just as he was selecting "Gravity" from the RedBox, the Giants called to say they had selected him in the third round with the 74th overall pick in the draft.
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"I thought they were joking," the defensive tackle said.
It wasn't until the phone was passed to Tom Coughlin that Bromley realized this was no prank. The kid from Jamaica, Queens, who grew up watching his favorite team win two Super Bowls on the strength of their defensive line and pass rush, was about to join the ranks of Osi Umenyiora, Justin Tuck and Michael Strahan.
"My home team, my favorite team, Big Blue," the bubbly Bromley said. "And then I get picked by them? Crazy."
Saturday was supposed to be the big day for him. He graduates from Syracuse, and he figured he'd be taken somewhere between the fourth and sixth rounds. Instead, the celebrations began a day early.
"The movie had been completely put on hold," he said.
Bromley is the third Syracuse player selected by the Giants in the last two drafts, following last year's picks of Justin Pugh and Ryan Nassib. The Giants like his ability to get after the quarterback from the middle of the line, touting his impressive 10 sacks in 2013 and 141/2 tackles for a loss. He also had three forced fumbles for the Orange last season.
"This guy, he's big, he's got some two-gap ability, he can stand in there and hold the point of attack," general manager Jerry Reese said. "He's got speed. The guy ran 4.9 and some change at the combine, so he can get up the field and finish on the quarterback."
The Giants also love his intangibles. He is the third player they have selected in this draft to have captained his college team. He also has overcome quite a bit in his life. He was abandoned by his biological mother shortly after birth, his father was charged with murder when he was 5 months old, and the grandmother who raised him died when he was 13.
"He's been an underdog his whole life," Giants vice president of player evaluations Marc Ross said.
That may be why Bromley said he wasn't even expecting a call on Friday night.
"Honestly, man, I'm one of those guys that thinks of the worst-case scenario," he said. "I was like, man, I didn't even expect to be drafted."