Here's an interesting perspective from Sports Illustrated's Peter King on Tennessee safety Eric Berry, the guy who is rated the best safety in this year's draft. King spoke to Falcons GM Tom Dimitroff, who had discussed the merits of taking Berry in the top-five with his friend, Chiefs GM Scott Pioli, who happens to be sitting fifth this year. Pioli, while acknowledging Berry's tremendous talents, warned Dimitroff of his reluctance to take safeties high.
It's not an uncommon philosophy, and is certainly one shared by Jerry Reese. But here's an interesting dilemma. If Berry indeed falls out of the top-10 and is there for the Giants' taking at 15, or even within reasonable trade distance, he might well be the best athlete available. Would it then be worth taking him, even in light of a safety chart that has a comebacking Kenny Phillips and free-agent pickup Antrel Rolle headlining what was a very poor field last year?
Phillips, of course, came with the 31st pick of the 2008 draft. The last first-round safety the Giants drafted before him was the multi-talented Shaun Williams with the 24th pick in 1998. The problem with Williams was that he did so many things well that the Giants never really learned how to use him. As a result, he got bounced all over the place and was never as effective as he should have been. And now, we all know about Phillips' arthritic left knee and the microfracture surgery he hopes will solve it.
So I ask you, if Berry falls to a best-available option, would you draft him? After reading King's piece, I'd probably take a shot with him because, coming off last season's mess, the Giants can never have too much depth there.
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