Home New York Giants Draft2023 NFL Draft Giants have interest in Minnesota center John Michael Schmitz

Giants have interest in Minnesota center John Michael Schmitz

by Dan Benton

The New York Giants entered the offseason with both Nick Gates and Jon Feliciano hitting the open market.

Gates was quickly scooped up by the Washington Commanders, leaving the Giants few options at the center position. They could still re-sign Feliciano but will also consider several draft options.

One of those is Minnesota center John Michael Schmitz, who Tony Pauline of Pro Football Network confirms the Giants are keeping eyes on.

During my pre-Combine mock draft, I had Schmitz being selected by the New York Giants with the 25th selection, and I can confirm the interest from Big Blue is real. There are several factors for this, but none more so than the fact the franchise made several heavy investments in skill players as well as quarterback Daniel Jones. Yet, at present, they do not have a starting center under contract.

In addition to the Giants, the Seattle Seahawks also have a significant interest in Schmitz.

NFL Network draft analyst Lance Zierlein gives Schmitz, who earned first-team Associated Press All-American and all-conference honors in 2022, a pro comparison of Ben Jones.

Schmitz is a highly consistent zone-scheme center with decent size. He is well-schooled in all phases of the run game. He consistently uses the proper footwork and angles to find early positioning and has the tenacity to finish blocks at a high rate. He has plus football intelligence and makes the calls for his offense. His drive power is average and he can be hit-or-miss getting to second-level targets. Schmitz lacks length and his edges will get a little leaky in pass protection from time to time, but his overall technique and teamwork in the run game should create a plug-and-play opportunity in the pros.

Most mock drafts have Schmitz going early in the second round but there have been a few that project him to the Giants at No. 25 overall.

If the Giants truly are honing in on Schmitz, it’s unlikely he falls to them in Round 2.

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