Ben Braden, Offensive Guard, Michigan Wolverines
Weight: 329 lbs
Arms: 34 inches
Hands: 9-? inches
40-Yard Dash: 5.04 seconds
Bench Press (225 lbs): 25 reps
Vertical Jump: 28 inches
Broad Jump: 102 inches
3-Cone Drill: 7.85 seconds
20-Yard Shuttle: 4.9 seconds
Physical and mean. Has good hand placement from the start. Will look to finish his block every snap. Upper-body strength is off the charts. Mauler in the run game. Blasts defenders on first contact often. Can anchor when taking on power rushers. Jolting punch in pass protections. Sets very well in pass protection.
Stiff in his pass sets. Lacks flexibility and often leans as a result. Not a good enough mover for pulling blocks. Doesn’t drive through blocks with his legs, which don’t come close to his upper body strength. Hand placement falls off after the initial set. No bend and bad balance.
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Mauler in the run game, but lacks a lot of refinement that you want to see. Lacks position versatility and scheme versatility. Is stuck as a guard in a power scheme, and one that won’t require much movement from him.
Braden is a phone-booth mauler that just needs lined up and attacks head on. He can be a day-one starter at guard, but will need help from someone and a lot of coaching to get his pass blocking up to level.
Fit With The Broncos
Braden is a ready-to-go run mauler that needs a lot of help as a pass blocker. He could help fix Denver’s issues running the ball, but is a liability in pass protection. He could also improve the depth, but Denver has a lot of young guys at guard to where not everyone on the roster will make it. However, in the mid-late rounds, Braden would be a good pickup for the scheme.
Draft Grade: Round 4
Where He Goes: Round 5
Insider's Take: Per sources, if Braden had some refinement as a pass blocker, he would be getting second-round talk. However, as the NFL is a passing league, the issues as a pass blocker could see him go undrafted, as that is how bad it is.
Erick Trickel is the Senior Draft Analyst for Mile High Huddle. You can find him on Twitter @ErickTrickel.