Giants improve their position in the 2018 NFL draft

OAKLAND, Calif. -- We're No. 2. We're No. 2.

That's what the New York Giants can chant after a weekend that saw them win by losing. If the NFL season ended today, they would own the No. 2 overall pick in the draft. The past three No. 2 overall picks were Mitch Trubisky, Carson Wentz and Marcus Mariota.

Quarterback, quarterback, quarterback. Hmmm. The Giants just so happen to have a soon-to-be 37-year-old quarterback and could be in search of their next Eli Manning. If that's the case, the way Sunday unfolded helped.

The Giants lost 24-17 to the Oakland Raiders and the San Francisco 49ers beat the Chicago Bears 15-14. It left only one team with a worse record than the Giants, once viewed as a Super Bowl contender before they crashed and burned. It's likely to cost their coach his job. Maybe their general manager, too.

Current Top 5

1. Cleveland Browns (0-12)

2. New York Giants (2-10)

3. San Francisco 49ers (2-10)

4. Denver Broncos (3-9)

5. Indianapolis Colts (3-9)

The tiebreaker for draft position goes by strength of schedule. The Giants have a worse strength of schedule than the 49ers. Therefore, they're No. 2!

The Browns are likely out of reach. They're so bad they all but locked up that top pick in the draft, which seems to have become their birthright.

Barring USC's Sam Darnold or UCLA's Josh Rosen staying in school this should provide the Giants the opportunity to draft a franchise quarterback with the second-overall pick, if they so choose. Darnold and Rosen are generally considered the top quarterbacks in the 2018 NFL draft.

ESPN draft analyst Mel Kiper Jr. has Rosen (2), Darnold (5) and Josh Allen (6) among his top six prospects.

Sunday worked out pretty well for the Giants if they were looking at draft positioning. They competed. They played hard. They didn't muck their hand like they did against the Los Angeles Rams or 49ers. And they moved up a spot in the draft.

The Giants played a better and more talented Raiders team tight for most of four quarters with Brandon Dixon and Ross Cockrell starting at cornerback, Travis Munson and Kelvin Sheppard logging significant snaps at linebacker and an offensive line of who knows what trying to protect quarterback Geno Smith.

"I thought the guys competed hard [Sunday]," coach Ben McAdoo said. "They played their tails off. Have to execute better. We came up short, but I'm proud of the way they fought."

Really, with that lineup, the Giants don't have a chance to win many games. They play the Cowboys, Eagles, Cardinals and Redskins down the stretch. It's hard to imagine more than one or two more wins, tops.

In the big picture, that's just fine. The No. 2 overall pick is a pretty nice consolation prize -- especially in the coming draft -- for a season of ineptitude.

If they could find their next Eli Manning that would mean they have almost 30 years straight with somewhere between a competent to elite quarterback, depending on the season. That's the kind of situation the Giants can only hope to back their way into with this disastrous season.