It was obvious from early on in the New York Giants 2018 season that they were going to need offensive linemen over the 2019 offseason. It made sense, then, to concentrate on offensive lines when thinking about which games to watch in college football every Saturday. That often lead to the common refrain of “watch Wisconsin”, and for good reason. The Badgers fielded one of the best offensive lines in college football last year, while also running an offense which incorporated many “pro-style” concepts, particularly in its running game.
Left guard Michael Deiter wasn’t the most heralded member of that Wisconsin offensive line, but he might be the most experienced and versatile. A red-shirt senior, Deiter has spent time at left tackle, center, and left guard for the Badgers. He likely won’t be a starter at tackle at the next level, but that experience, versatility, and pedigree are sure to intrigue general managers -- including Dave Gettleman.
- Big frame with the size the NFL prefers. Carries his weight well with little “sloppy” extra mass.
- Has played all over Wisconsin’s line, which increases his likelihood of finding a home on an NFL line.
- Excellent mobility for a guard. Easily able to pull or work off blocks to the second level.
- Deals well with stunts and twists.
- Generally plays with good pad level, flashing the ability to “strike, leverage, and drive” in the run game.
- Looks for work and plays through the whistle.
- Flashes the ability to deliver a jolt with his punch.
- Named an offensive captain for his senior season.
- Occasionally lunges and plays out over his toes.
- Height can work against him inside. If his pad level rises he can get put on roller skates.
- Occasionally catches more athletic rushers rather than striking with his punch.
- Winds up on the ground a bit too much. Balance might be an issue.
(Deiter is left guard, number 63)
What They’re Saying
“Michael Deiter is a scheme diverse prospect who will bring a diverse set of tools to whichever NFL franchise drafts him. Deiter has excellent mobility and his play in space allows him to be a lead blocker on boundary plays and screens. Deiter has the needed anchor and mass to hold his ground in one on one situations and has the lateral mobility to be an effective interior pass protector, despite a lack of length to consistently land strikes first against defenders.”
- Kyle Crabbs (The Draft Network scouting report)
Does He Fit The Giants?
The Giants need help and competition from the center position to the right tackle position. Deiter comes from one of the true offensive line factories in college football, and plays like a “Wisconsin” offensive lineman. He is probably a bit tall to be a center in the NFL -- though his mobility is a good fit for the position -- but he should be able to play either right or left guard. Deiter’s size and frame suggest an offensive tackle, but he doesn’t deal with speed off the edge very well, and he might be better inside. That could impact his draft stock, but general managers are (slowly) coming around to the idea that all offensive line positions are important.
His mobility, particularly for his size, makes him scheme diverse. Deiter should be attractive to teams which run zone schemes, man-gap schemes, and everything in between. He will need to get more comfortable dealing with athletic rushers inside, and at times can get caught lunging or letting his pads rise, both of which are dangerous given his height. However, when he plays with good leverage he is a bully inside and has starter upside.
As long as he can be comfortable with playing on the right side, the Giants should give Deiter a long look in the run-up to the draft.