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Giants to get first look at DeVonta Smith after Eagles’ draft steal

They beloved him. They wished him. They weren’t positive in the event that they had been in prime position to get him.

That was the Giants and their affection for DeVonta Smith. That was additionally the Eagles and their affection for a similar participant.

As these two NFC rivals, heading in reverse instructions (Eagles up, Giants down) get set to sq. off for the first time this season, Sunday at MetLife Stadium, the Eagles, who landed the prize, will get to put Smith on the sector carrying inexperienced. And the Giants will likely be tasked with discovering a approach to cease a participant they coveted and failed to make a transfer to get.

“I’m glad that we traded up as a result of he’s actually particular to this crew and I’m positive glad we’ve got him on this soccer crew,’’ Eagles head coach Nick Sirianni stated.

DeVonta Smith scores a landing for the Eagles.

The Giants wished Smith on their crew. After their crummy 6-10 document in 2020 earned them the eleventh decide within the 2021 NFL Draft, there have been a number of gamers the Giants had been serious about deciding on — gamers they believed had a sensible likelihood to nonetheless be on the board after the highest 10 picks. They had been excessive on cornerbacks Jaycee Horn and Patrick Surtain II. They had been excessive on Smith and Jaylen Waddle as extensive receivers. They figured (appropriately) offensive deal with Penei Sewell can be gone.

As the first spherical progressed, the gamers the Giants prioritized had been getting plucked off. They anticipated the Cowboys, at No. 10, wouldn’t take a receiver (they already had loads of expertise at that position) and would as an alternative deal with bettering their shabby protection. The Giants thought proper, however didn’t anticipate what occurred with Dallas on the clock. The Eagles, sitting at No. 12, referred to as the Cowboys and a uncommon commerce between division rivals was mentioned and finalized. The Eagles took Smith at No. 10, and similar to that, the Giants realized that as an alternative of slipping the Heisman Trophy winner into their offense, they had been going to have to discover a approach to cease him twice a year for the foreseeable future.

“We had been doing no matter we would have liked to do to get to the participant that we actually coveted in that draft, which was DeVonta Smith,’’ Sirianni stated. “I’m positive glad we’ve got him.’’

It was a blow to the Giants. Smith was the final of a gaggle of gamers the Giants deemed worthy of a top-11 decide. General supervisor Dave Gettleman made the first trade-down of his NFL career when the Bears wished to come up to No. 11 to take quarterback Justin Fields. The Giants moved down to No. 20 and chosen Kadarius Toney, a slot receiver from Florida they’d rated extremely, however a notch beneath Waddle and Smith.

DeVonta Smith hauls in a catch for the Eagles

Toney has struggled by way of a disjointed rookie year, battling by way of accidents and sometimes stymied as to the place he matches in an offense that has stumbled round, main to head coach Joe Judge on Tuesday firing offensive coordinator Jason Garrett. Toney is lacking follow time once more this week — this time it’s due to a quad contusion. In 9 video games, he has 35 receptions for 392 yards, and he has but to rating his first NFL landing.

There had been questions on Smith’s sturdiness — he’s rail-thin — however he has not missed a sport for the Eagles, who at 5-6 are surging. Smith leads his crew with 46 receptions for 664 yards and 4 touchdowns. He appears to be like utterly NFL-ready. Toney, with extra tough edges, doesn’t.

“I can’t get on this bus with out him,’’ Sirianni stated. “We want DeVonta Smith as a result of he’s considered one of our hardest guys. He’s powerful, he’s sensible, clearly his expertise speaks for itself and what he did in faculty and what he continues to do within the NFL.

“He’s very instinctive and I think that’s a great separator in a lot of people in this league. All the guys in the league have talent. The guys that are instinctive just have a knack to make plays. So DeVonta, I just feel like he’s light years ahead of other rookie wide receivers that I’ve coached in the sense that he really understands how to attack a defensive back.”

The Giants, for the first time, will see what they missed out on.

“I believe he’s artful, he’s athletic,’’ James Bradberry, the Giants’ greatest cornerback, stated. “I watched his releases in his route operating. I really feel like he runs excellent routes. He’s only a savvy man for a younger man on this league. He has some smoothness to him.’’

The Eagles get to take pleasure in that smoothness. The Giants get to see what they missed out on.