Rueben Randle signed with the Philadelphia Eagles on Wednesday, which closes the book on the New York Giants' horrendous 2012 draft and the overall stretch of ineffective drafting that led to their current streak of three straight losing seasons. No one is left on the Giants' roster from the 2012 draft, or the 2011 draft for that matter. The only two players GM Jerry Reese drafted between 2007 and 2012 who are on the Giants' roster now are Zak DeOssie and Jason Pierre-Paul.
That's a major problem, and one we've discussed in detail. The failure of Randle, the No. 63 pick in the 2012 draft, to develop into the kind of player the Giants would want to re-sign when his rookie contract expired is merely the latest specific aspect of the biggest thing that's gone wrong with the Giants in the past half-decade. We're not here to harp.
For better or for worse, Randle was a starting wide receiver for the Giants last year and needs to be replaced. Giants coach Ben McAdoo said Wednesday at the owners' meetings that he was comfortable with his current group of wide receivers, but an objective outside observer must conclude that his comfort level could be improved. This is a list of wide receivers currently on the Giants' roster:
Odell Beckham Jr. -- Superstar
Victor Cruz -- Former star, now a huge injury question mark from whom high-end production in the slot would be a bonus.
Dwayne Harris -- Special-teams ace who played OK in the slot in Cruz's place last year.
Myles White -- Caught seven passes for 88 yards and a touchdown in 12 games last year.
Even if Cruz does come back and play well, the Giants need to find someone to play on the outside opposite Beckham. And that list doesn't include any obvious candidates. There are a couple of wide receivers still available in free agency, and the fact that the Giants didn't make an effort to keep Randle tells you he didn't outrank any of them by any significant margin in their minds. So they still could -- and likely will -- sign someone. And the draft offers opportunity to add at that position as well.
But some are suggesting the Giants use the No. 10 pick in next month's draft on a wide receiver like Mississippi's Laquon Treadwell, and I think that would be a mistake. Especially as a reaction to the loss of Randle. Randle was a late second-round pick and kind of produced like one. Sure, you'd like better production from your WR2 spot than Randle gave you, but the Giants aren't looking for a superstar-caliber WR1 here. They have that already. They used the No. 12 pick in the draft just two years ago on him. To spend another pick this high at the same position when there are so many more glaring long-range needs on defense would be poor roster-building. Fun for the fans to grab a skill-position guy with a recognizable name, sure, but unwise in the big picture.
The Giants poked around early on guys like Marvin Jones and Mohamed Sanu, but they didn't get them. Their activity so far in free agency clearly shows that they'd have been willing to outspend the Lions and Falcons for those players if they'd believed them to be worth the prices for which they signed. They didn't, so they're moving into the bargain-bin phase of free agency in search of wide receiver solutions. Nothing wrong with that. Everybody on your roster can't be a multi-millionaire.
Basically, the message here is that, yes, they need to replace Randle, but, no, they don't have to radically alter their plan just because he left. They'll find someone to play opposite Beckham, whether that player is on the roster now or not. But they have bigger problems and lots of them, and they're operating with the whole roster in mind. As they should.