Former Ohio State defensive tackle Michael Bennett was a leader for the Buckeyes on and off the field. His senior campaign included an impressive 40 total tackles, 24 of which were solo tackles, along with seven sacks.
As one of Urban Meyer's most trusted players, Bennett was always front and center during interviews and his leadership qualities were touted by the entire Ohio State coaching staff. These off-the-field qualities will be something NFL teams will take into strong consideration when trying to find their franchise defensive players.
Weight: 293 lbs
Arms: 33 5/8"
Hands: 10 1/4"
NFL.com reported Bennett as having been one of the most entertaining players to take the podium on Saturday. He discussed everything from his social media strategy to the three different techniques he's comfortable playing in pro-style defenses.
Bennett might not be the biggest tackle at the combine but he's not letting his size keep him down. He was sure to point out that his 293-pound frame was actually more of a positive than negative.
"At 290-300 pounds, you have to be flawless in your technique. Because you slip up and put your foot the wrong way, or miss with your hand and not hit the guy, they have a better chance of moving you than if a 330-pounder misses with his hands," Bennett quipped to the gathered media.
One of the more interesting storylines to come out of Bennett's interviews was the interest from the Detroit Lions. The Lions are currently trying to decide if they should place a franchise tag on current top-league tackle Ndamukong Suh; in order to avoid having the highest paid tackle in NFL history, they are exploring all their options at the combine.
"They said they think I would fit in, but they got to make sure that I'm going to be that guy who can replace an Ndamukong Suh or a Nick Fairley," Bennett said. "They were trying to get a feel for if I can fit into their defense right away, and play right away. And not just play, but be a playmaker for them."
Bennett will get another chance to show scouts his athletic ability during Ohio State's Pro Day. He decided to forgo any of the running workouts at the combine due to a groin issue he is working through.
Despite a senior year that started out slow, Bennett is still a coveted player after a strong showing during the Championship run at the end of the season. Projected to go in the first two-rounds, Bennett has the highest chance of any incoming Buckeye to start and be a playmaker right away.
Bennett doesn't seem nearly as concerned about what round he'll be drafted in as everyone else, noting, "To accomplish my dream of going in the draft is going to be phenomenal. Whatever round I go in doesn't matter. Whatever team I go to, it's going to be the same thing - work my butt off, get better every day and take a leadership position."