The Giants have selected Florida WR Kadarius Toney with 20th overall pick in 2021 NFL Draft.
A First-Team All-SEC wideout in 2020, the Gator product is yet another offensive playmaker the Giants have added this offseason. He will join Kenny Golladay in the wide receivers room with Sterling Shepard and Darius Slayton also in the mix for a very solid group.
Toney’s senior season saw the best production of his college career by far, totaling 984 yards on 70 receptions with 10 touchdowns over 11 games.
At 6-foot, 199 pounds, Toney ran a blazing 4.39 40-yard dash at Florida’s Pro Day and posted a 11-foot-4 broad jump with a 41-inch vertical. Those numbers boosted his draft stock, and New York clearly likes what he brings to the table.
Clearly, Dave Gettleman wanted to do whatever he could to add more weapons for quarterback Daniel Jones.
It makes sense, since this is a critical year for the young quarterback, and because the Giants need to revive what was a horrific offense last season. He wanted Alabama receiver Devonta Smith. But once the Eagles traded up to grab him ahead of the Giants, Gettleman traded down and landed Toney instead.
Now, the 6-foot, 199-pound Toney isn’t nearly as polished, explosive or productive as Smith. But he is a very versatile playmaker. He can play on the outside or out of the slot, he can be dangerous as a runner, and he has returned punts and kicks. For the Giants, he will be a weapon that offensive coordinator Jason Garrett will just have to find ways to use.
Toney isn’t without risk. He had some injury issues at Florida and only one season of good production. He also has off-field issues which included a suspension for the season opener in 2018 when he was involved in a confrontation between some football players and local residents of Gainesville, Fla. In that incident, Toney reportedly had an air gun painted to look like an AR-15.
The Giants obviously are comfortable with whatever risk there is, though, especially since many scouts thought he was the next best receiver in the draft, after the big three. Yes, it’s a letdown that they didn’t get Smith. But remember, they got the Chicago Bears’ 2022 first-rounder to drop from 11 to 20.
That makes the Toney pick a little more exciting, even if the player isn’t exciting as the one they really wanted to select.