After all, both teams were in a position to select key franchise players within the top five. The Giants at number two and the Jets at three.
If you turn back the clock to late April, the hope was that both teams would select not just good players, but key cornerstone players to be a part of the foundation for years to come.
Fast forward a few months, and sadly the result when it comes to wins and losses for both teams hasn’t changed a whole lot.
The Jets are a 4-9 football team and the Giants, even after winning four of their last five games, are still a 5-8 team.
It’s another lousy season no doubt, but on Sunday there was a legitimate glimmer of hope for the future.
For the Giants, it’s the hope you have had all season with rookie running back Saquon Barkley.
It’s pretty obvious that even though Barkley is only in his first year in the NFL, he is without a doubt one of the most electrifying running backs in the sport.
On any given play, Barkley has the ability to take it all the way for a touchdown.
Barkley has done basically everything you could have hoped for in his first season.
It’s unfortunate that the end result has not led to more wins, but that is no fault of the rookie running back.
I was skeptical of the pick of Saquon Barkley. The NFL is a quarterback-driven league and current Giants quarterback Eli Manning isn’t getting any younger. That said, I acknowledge that the Giants are very lucky to have Barkley on the roster.
On the other hand, the Jets have not seen as many “wow” moments from quarterback Sam Darnold in his first season in the green-and-white.
It’s been a season of ups and downs and injuries, and it’s been your usual rookie season for a player trying to learn the most complicated and important position on a football field.
Last Friday, some fans were wondering if Darnold should play the final four games of the season due to his banged-up state and the hideous Jets coaching staff.
It was a ridiculous take to have. On Sunday, Sam Darnold showed you why he needs to play.
The talent is there. It was there on the incredible game-tying touchdown pass to Robbie Anderson, and it was there on the go-ahead touchdown drive, the first ever fourth-quarter comeback of the rookie’s career.
The experience of playing in cold weather and environments like Buffalo and New England late in the year is a must for a quarterback who is going to spend his career (hopefully) in the AFC East.
Darnold’s fourth quarter is what Jets fans will carry into the offseason, hoping that he continues to progress and grow into the job as the leader and face of the franchise.
The narrative of these two players will be followed for a long period of time in New York sports.
Did the Giants get it right with Barkley? Did the Jets get it right with Darnold?
Over the long haul, only time will tell, but on Sunday it was basically just the way the Giants and Jets drew it up.
You can listen to me Tuesday from 10 to 2 a.m., Friday from 1 to 6 a.m., Saturday from 5 to 9 p.m., Monday from 2 to 6 a.m. & 6:30 to 8 p.m. with Carl Banks on WFAN Sports Radio 660/1019 FM. You can also watch me Sunday at 11 p.m. on Geico Sportsnight on SNY.
JJ’s Week 15 Unlocks
• Kansas City -3.5
• NY Giants -2.5
• Baltimore -8
• LA Rams -9
• Carolina +6.5