ATLANTA – Being drafted by a team and then sitting around for a while is not every first-round pick’s dream come true. For Dwayne Haskins, though, it might be if the Giants take him with the sixth overall selection and keep Eli Manning around to play.
“I would love it,” said the Ohio State quarterback who threw for 4,831 yards and 50 touchdown passes in 2018 and figures to be one of the top quarterbacks taken in April’s draft. “I grew up watching Eli Manning back when he had [Jeremy] Shockey and [Amani] Toomer and Plaxico [Burress]. I loved that team.”
Haskins grew up in Highland Park, New Jersey, and although he is only 21, insists that he has vivid memories of those Giants teams from more than a decade ago. He also said that being from the area would make him comfortable playing in such an intense market.
That’s not to say that Haskins is locked in on the Giants, or the Giants are on him.
“Wherever I go I go, my friend,” he said when asked about the Giants on Radio Row on Friday at the Super Bowl.
Others, though, seem to think he would make sense for the Giants at that spot.
NFL analyst Steve Mariucci coached Haskins in the Under Armour all-star game coming out of high school and has been impressed watching him play at Ohio State.
“I’m proud that he has grown into the quarterback he is and the young man that he is,” Mariucci said. “He was 13-1 last year, what a year he had, 50 touchdowns, the whole thing. What, 4,800 passing yards? He really lit it up. And I think he’s going to have a bright career. It’s going to be fun where he gets drafted in regards to the other quarterbacks but it’s going to be pretty high.”
Mariucci said he has not yet done his draft evaluations and figures there will be plenty of players with overall draft grades higher than the quarterbacks. But teams that are quarterback-needy, he said, may throw those numbers out the window.
And yes, Mariucci thinks the Giants are a quarterback-needy team.
“Perfect time to get one, perfect,” he said of the Giants. “Eli’s not done and for somebody to sit behind Eli for even a year would be a huge benefit, just like Patrick Mahomes did with Alex Smith. Would be terrific. Like Aaron Rodgers had with Brett Favre. It would be terrific. Nobody wants to go three years but to sit behind somebody is a luxury.”
One that Haskins may get to enjoy.