Former Syracuse quarterback Ryan Nassib participates in a passing drill at the NFL scouting combine in February at Lucas Oil Stadium in Indianapolis.(Photo: Brian Spurlock, USA TODAY Sports)
(USA TODAY) -- Ryan Nassib was supposed to be new Buffalo Bills coach Doug Marrone's guy with the No. 8 overall pick or when Nassib's former Syracuse coach traded down to the 16th overall spot Thursday. But when Marrone selected former Florida State quarterback EJ Manuel to be his guy, Nassib's stock tumbled.
That is, until New York Giants general manager Jerry Reese and coach Tom Coughlin stopped his fall at pick No. 110 on Day 3. Reese is always guided by the best-available value atop his board.
The Giants likely view Nassib as a backup upgrade over David Carr behind two-time Super Bowl-winning quarterback Eli Manning.
"If he doesn't ever play, that would be great," Giants general manager Jerry Reese said. "That's a good problem to have. If he needs to play, we're hoping that whatever time that is that he'll be up and ready to go."
The Giants have four quarterbacks on their roster -- Manning, David Carr, Curtis Painter and Nassib.
"With respect to how many quarterbacks we'll keep on the roster, we don't know," Reese said. "We used to keep three quarterbacks all the time, and I think we went to two for the last several years and usually have a guy on the practice squad. We could very well keep three quarterbacks, so we'll make that decision when it's time."
Nassib was considered the best quarterback in a weak crop by ESPN analyst Jon Gruden. And NFL Network Mike Mayock insists that 6-2, 222-pound Nassib -- who had 26 touchdown passes and 10 interceptions in his senior season -- has everything to develop into a future starter.
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Nassib is a gym rat who has a strong enough arm, good mobility and toughness. His one weakness is inconsistent footwork that shows up on erratic deep-ball accuracy. He has a tendency to raise his right foot, which causes some of his throws to sail.
"He's got the arm strength," Reese said. "We like the accuracy about him. We like that 'it' factor on him. ... He reminded me of (Cincinnati Bengals quarterback) Andy Dalton in some ways when I first saw him, but our scouts liked him. Our coaches like him. Our quarterbacks coach (Sean Ryan) likes him."
But Reese admitted Nassib wasn't the quarterback the Giants had rated the highest.
"Again, we have Eli in the prime of his career and you actually hope this quarterback never plays," Reese said. "If something happens? We want to have a guy ready to go, and this guy fits the pattern that we need.
"We're just looking for a good player to be the backup quarterback and we're fortunate enough to secure this young guy, and we'll see where it goes. Again, maybe he'll never play here. We hope Eli plays for a long, long time, and maybe this young man will never play, but if he has to play, we think he has a good skill set to help us win football games."
The Giants have tried for years to develop a late-round quarterback and flip him in a trade, a la Matt Schaub, Matt Hasselbeck, Matt Flynn or Kevin Kolb. They selected Andre' Woodson (sixth round, 2008) and Rhett Bomar (fifth round, 2009). Now, they've dipped into the fourth round, surely with the thought that Nassib could one day be dealt for a much higher pick.