Giants keeping eye on J.J. McCarthy with Michigan QB’s draft stock on the rise

J.J. McCarthy would have to throw a few hundred passes Friday just to close one gap between him and the other top quarterbacks in the NFL draft.

Of course, that type of rubber-arming is not going to happen, and there won’t be a defense on the field.

But McCarthy’s workout at Michigan still is one of the most interesting on the national Pro Day circuit — especially for the Giants — because scouts are craving more exposure to the fast-rising prospect.

McCarthy could be selected as high as the Giants’ No. 6 pick. Getty Images

McCarthy attempted just 713 passes during his college career — compared to Jayden Daniels’ 1,438, Caleb Williams’ 1,099 and Drake Maye’s 952 — as a by-product of the defending national champion Wolverines building big leads and playing through their defense.

“You just want to see him throw more,” said draft analyst Matt Miller, who will be on site as part of ESPN’s coverage.

“The more times you can see something, the more comfortable you get with it — how it comes out of his hand, the totality of the arm strength, the velocity. I want to see him move a little bit because that offensive line at Michigan was really good. There weren’t a lot of times we saw him move out of center and throw on the go.”

The Giants, who are in the market for a young quarterback because of Daniel Jones’ long injury history and his contract flexibility in 2025, are expected to send at least one high-ranking scouting executive to Ann Arbor, Mich.

Where it once was crazy to think McCarthy could be selected as high as the Giants’ No. 6 pick, it now seems that is the floor for his projections.

McCarthy has met with the Giants. USA TODAY Sports via Reuters Con

“What started the rise for me was that when they had to put it on him, he stepped up,” Miller told The Post. “There’s not a lot of it, but the Ohio State game and the national semifinal game against Alabama were the two best games he ever played. He performed in those big moments.”

McCarthy already met with Giants’ brass at the scouting combine and on a top-30 prospect visit to the team facility. His intangibles — namely, intelligence, communication skills and maturity — have left a strong impression on multiple teams, two league sources told The Post.

The 21-year-old proven winner (27-1 record) can boost his stock further Friday by throwing the ball with accuracy to his left side.

On throws of 10-plus yards outside the numbers during his career, McCarthy completed 56.2 percent with a 205.4 quarterback efficiency to his right compared to 42.6 percent with a 144.2 quarterback efficiency to his left, according to Yahoo.

“I thought at the combine that he really had a hard time throwing to his left,” Miller said. “It was … like, ‘He’s really a different player throwing to his left than his right.’ That’s not a mental thing. That’s a physical thing you can work on. I want to see if he has fixed the mechanics on throwing left.”

Quarterbacks have never made up the first four picks of a draft class, but Cardinals general manager Monti Ossenfort revealed Wednesday he is fielding offers for No. 4 in case this is the first.

Would Ossenfort be enticed by a small trade package from the Giants, because he only would have to move down to No. 6 and still could land an elite receiver prospect? Or is he looking for the multiple first-round picks that the Vikings (No. 11) or Broncos (No. 12) would have to include to trade in front of the Giants?

“I think you are going to have to move up [from No. 6] to get him,” Miller said.

Quarterbacks tend to get over-drafted by needy teams.

The difference between McCarthy and Maye or Daniels near the top is seen as smaller than the difference between McCarthy and late-first or second-round quarterback prospects Bo Nix and Michael Penix Jr. in most league circles.

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“When you start getting around people who know the kid, and you aren’t just watching him play on TV or in person, it’s like, ‘OK, I get the allure of you as a human being, too,’ ” Miller said.

“He’s all about ball, but not in a bad way that’s obsessive. He knows how to be coached. I hear that about him all the time. This guy has been coached harder in high school and college — by his dad, his quarterbacks coach, Jim Harbaugh — than he probably will be in the NFL. He’s going to take well to that.”

Sounds like a box that Giants head coach Brian Daboll would want checked.

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