The New York Giants are likely set at guard for the near future. While they need to get more from Will Hernandez and Kevin Zeitler in 2020 (and beyond) than they did in 2019, they are still two good guards around whom the Giants should be able to build.
However, things seldom go according to plan and it would behoove the Giants to prepare for the possibility that they may need a guard.
Michigan guard Ben Bredeson was highly recruited out of high school and has become a very experienced pro prospect. He has experience in a variety of blocking schemes with a “Pro Style” offense and has played against some of the best defensive linemen in the country over the last four years. Could the Giants look to Bredeson as an eventual starter for the interior of their offensive line?
Prospect: Ben Bredeson, G, Michigan
Games Watched: vs Ohio State (2018), vs Florida (2019), vs Iowa (2019), vs Penn State (2019)
Red Flags: None
Height: 6046 (6-foot-4 3⁄4 inches)
Weight: 316 pounds
Arm Length, Wingspan: 31 1⁄2 inches, 76 1/8”
Hand Size: 10”
Games Played: 49 (45 starts at LG)
Best: Leverage, strength, competitive toughness, run blocking
Worst: Athleticism, length
Projection: Starting guard or important backup
Ben Bredeson is a stocky, powerfully built guard prospect from the University of Michigan. Bredeson is a very experienced prospect with 49 total starts and 45 starts at left guard. Bredeson plays with good natural leverage, consistently showing a wide base and good knee and hip flexion. He has good hand usage, timing his punches well with his feet and consistently trying to get his hands on defenders first and on their chest plates.
Bredeson is reliable in pass protection, with a good understanding and awareness of what is going on around him. He mirrors inside rushers well, using heavy, active hands to keep them from establishing leverage on him. He has the power to anchor against bull rushes and enough lateral quickness to deal with most interior rushers. Bredeson is also a good run blocker, able to use his leverage and power to create movement on the line of scrimmage. He fires off the ball and delivers heavy blocks to defenders. He is capable of playing in both man and zone blocking schemes and creates running lanes in both schemes.
Bredeson is also a capable pulling guard, showing a good understanding of positioning and timing.
Bredeson’s lack of length could be a major hurdle at the NFL level. He struggled at times when longer or more athletic linemen were able to get their hands on him first. His 31 ½ inch arms are obviously short and can be exploited by defenders. Bredeson is also a limited athlete who labors to run more than a few yards. This limits his effectiveness on screen passes and impacts his ability to block accurately in space. Balance is also occasionally an issue for him.
Overall Grade: 4.5 - An athletically limited prospect with some above-average traits you can win with. A second-day value.
Ben Bredeson has the upside to be a potential starter at the NFL level, but his short arms could fall below minimum thresholds for some teams. Despite his physical and athletic limitations, Bredeson is a capable blocker in both pass protection and run blocking. He is experienced and works to overcome his limitations with good technique and aggressive play. He will usually win the rep when he wins the initial battle, and usually has a chance to re-anchor if he doesn’t win right away. He is a bulldog of a blocker and coaches will love that he is frequently seen as the last player to disengage from his defender and consistently gives the final shove.
He has the versatility to play in a variety of blocking schemes, but teams should recognize his athletic limitations and not ask him to play in space often.