Offensive Tackle ~ Caleb Benenoch ~ Los Angeles
Bruins ~ 6054/312
The Gutters are riddled with the Corpses of Teams that were built around so-called "skill" Players ~ teams that delighted their Fantasy FootBall Fans every Year, all the way until January...until The Only Games That Really Matter.
It is then, of course, that the Capacity ~ or lack thereof ~ to Move The Chains and protect the QuarterBack against PlayOff Caliber Defenses rears its ugly head. And another Team built for Fantasy FootBall bites the dust.
This is how I break things down, when I'm evaluating Offensive Tackles:
Power: Above all: Core Power. Torso Power is important, but Core Power, from the Knees to the Ribs, is absolutely crucial. All the upper body Strength in the world will still fail if you simply can't dig in your heels. But Core Power enables an Offensive Lineman to project Power in the Running Game and to reject Power in the Passing Game.
Agility: Launch Velocity, Acceleration, and above all: Fluidity or Core Agility. Core Agility is even more essential to sustained good Health ~ and to sustained good FootBall ~ than Core Power. The ability to react with Serpentine smoothness is a tremendous asset in all Aspects of the Game, and certainly in the Hand to Hand Combat that characterizes Trench Warfare. All the Power in the World goes only so far if you're stiff and lumbering out there.
Combat Skills: Paw Power, Mechanics ~ Hand Speed & Positioning ~ and of course: Frame.
Intangibles: Processing Speed and Motor. Processing Speed or Diagnostic Velocity is about how quickly and effectively one Reads & Reacts to how the Rapidly Roiling Tactical LandScape effects Blocking Schemes, and Motor is about Endurance and Drive: How much Work has been put into Conditioning, and how it manifests itself.
Run Blocking: Power, Agility, Combat Skills, Processing Speed, and Motor.
Pass Blocking: Power, Agility, Combat Skills, Processing Speed, and Motor.
Broken down into SubCategories, it'd go something like this:
* Core Power ~ lower body Power. Core Power trumps Torso Power. Tyrannosaurus Rex had exceptional Core Power.
* Torso Power ~ upper Body Power. Important, but not crucial. T Rex had lousy Torso Power...yet was King.
* Anchoring Strength in the Passing Game. The capacity to Stand one's Ground.
* Drive Power in the Running Game. The capacity to drive your man back.
* Fluidity, above all things: Core Agility & Flexibility makes everything possible.
* Launch Velocity ~ Speed into Contact off the Snap.
* Acceleration ~ Short Speed or Quickness.
* Frame ~ Arms, Hands, and above all: WingSpan.
* Field Vision ~ Reacting to the Tactical LandScape: It's all about Angles & Leverage.
* Paw Positioning ~ It's all about Angles & Leverage.
* Paw Persistence ~ RPMs: Activity & Persistence.
* FootWork ~ RPMs: Activity & Persistence.
* Processing Speed ~ Field Vision. Reading Defensive Schemes quickly and effectively, and finding 2nd Level Targets.
* Motor ~ Intensity and Duration.
* Power ~ Drive Power to project Power in the Running Game.
* Agility ~ especially Acceleration DownField or to the Flank.
* Combat Skills
* Processing Speed
* Power ~ Anchoring Strength to reject Power in the Passing Game.
* Agility ~ especially Fluidity to Mirror the Pass Rusher.
* Combat Skills
* Processing Speed
Agility: Competitive. Decent Launch Velocity. Exceptional Acceleration. Mediocre Fluidity.
Combat Skills: Mediocre. Adequate Persistence but shaky Paw Positioning and Sequencing.
Intangibles: Mediocre Field Vision and mediocre Motor.
Run Blocking: He has a lot of very raw Potential as a Zone Scheme Team Run Blocker. Despite a lousy 3 Cone Time that translates all too well to the Field of Battle, I suspect untapped Fluidity in Benonoch's Frame, as his easy Crouch hints at Intrinsic Core Agility. It's possible that his Fluidity ~ a funny term but an absolutely crucial Aspect of Success ~ could improve immensely with some Pilates. Anyway: He lacks Power, but not Speed, so there's Zone Potential.
Pass Blocking: Unless my Suspicions about Latent Intrinsic Fluidity are both true and ultimately realized, his lack of it will translate to mediocre Lateral Agility, which, coupled with marginal Power, will render'm a Liability.
On the other hand, he's got an impressive WingSpan, terrific Speed, and could quite possibly develop far better Fluidity than's been evident to this point, all of which convinces me that he's at least worth a Shot.
I've read several surprising comments from Writers I greatly respect suggesting that his best Potential is at Offensive Guard. I reckon that those thoughts are based on his having looked effective ~ perhaps even better ~ at Guard in the few Games that he substituted there, last Year. But that hardly means that he translates better as a Guard.
Benenoch's largest evident Liability is his Power, not his Agility.
Moving him to Guard would be disastrous.
At Tackle, however, where Agility is more crucial than Power, he's got some Potential. Whether or not he reaches it is quite another matter. I do not presume to know what was going on in Benenoch's Head at any point, and it may well be that he was at times suffering Injuries that I was unaware of, but I cannot claim that I am persuaded either of the Intensity of his Motor nor the Acuity of his Field Vision or Processing Speed. I'm not saying it isn't there: Only that I didn't see it.
But is there enough raw Talent there to place a Bet on? Absolutely.
Grateful Thanks, as always, for the crucial Work done by the folks at Draft BreakDown!!
None of this is even remotely a Complaint, mind you, but rather a Warning!! Caveat Emptor!