I am not sure if DE should be low on the needs chart....I would put it at 3. If we want to beat New England, the defense has to put Brady on his butt repeatedly. He hates getting hit and his game falls apart under consistent pressure. The Giants proved this, over and over. Add another pass rusher opposite Wake....and throw in Vernon and Pee Wee at times. Relentless punishment of Brady = victory. Also, a top flight pass rush will do wonders for the secondary.
We were 7th in the NFL in sacks with 42. Taking a guy in the 1st round when we already have Wake, Starks, Soliai, and Odrick up front is overkill in my opinion. We just need to be patient and let guys like Odrick and Vernon continue to develop. Between the two of them they had 8.5 sacks, 7 tackles for loss, 2 passes defended, and 2 forced fumbles. I only think those numbers will go up next year now that both guys have had a season to learn their respective roles. But I get what you're saying, you want to see us try and build a defensive front similar to the Giants because it flusters Brady. But just realize that the Giants were 22nd in the league in sacks this year with 33 sacks. That defensive front isn't as great as you think. Yes they get after Brady, but I think that has more to do with gameplanning done by Coughlin than it does their amazing skill.
A lot of Brady's success against us is because we have trouble covering slot receivers and tightends (their strength). We need to find safeties that can cover Gronk and Hernandez. We need to find nickel guys who can keep up and cover Welker in the slot. We'll never shut them down, but we can slow them down by doing a better job covering their guys and limiting them. Eventually Brady will make a mistake. When he does, we need playmakers that are able to take advantage and make the interception.