by Michael Stewart @golferbad
The 2020 class at offensive guard has good depth and we could see many taken throughout the draft. You’re not going to see any Quenton Nelson among this group, but you will see a vast amount of solid run blockers available.
This year’s class is also versatile and can play multiple positions as well. NFL teams like offensive linemen who can play multiple positions and perhaps the Giants could have an interest. Here are my top 10 offensive guards’ prospects for 2020.
- Solomon Kindley (Georgia) 6’4/335: Kindley toughest opponents could arguably be his own defensive linemen at Georgia during practices. Kindley is solid at the point of attack and keeps his feet moving until the whistle. Kindley operates well between the trenches and would be a solid pick on possibly day 2 in the draft.
- Shane Lemieux (Oregon) 6’4/317: Lemieux is very physical and is extremely tenacious especially in the running game. Lemieux has very good balance and is extremely strong in his lower body. Lemieux needs to work on his pass blocking skills and needs a solid season in the NFL to get acclimated.
- Ben Bredeson (Michigan) 6’5/305: Bredeson uses his arm length well and is able to lock down defenders after his initial contact. Many scouts project him to convert to tackle at the pro level but is capable of being a multi-position lineman in the NFL.
- Logan Stenberg (Kentucky) 6’6/326: Stenberg jumps into the top 10 after an impressive 2019 season for the Wildcats. Stenberg is already a solid pass blocker and is not far behind as a run blocker. Stenberg needs to work on his leverage as he often puts himself in awkward positions by not bending to provide a strong base.
- Netane Muti (Fresno State) 6’3/310: Muti is extremely aggressive with a bit of a nasty edge to his game. Muti excels in open space (pulling on sweeps or screens) by utilizing his agility and enjoys contact.
- Deonte Brown (Alabama) 6’4/338: Brown was very consistent for the Crimson Tide in 2019 and does his best work within the tackles. Brown is extremely strong; especially in the lower body and has dominated opposing linemen in the running game. Brown needs to work on pass protection, but has all the ingredients to be a solid guard in the NFL.
- Ben Cleveland (Georgia) 6’6/335: Cleveland’s best attributes is his strength, but he needs to work on his footwork. Cleveland excels on head to head blocking but struggles when asked to block in the open space.
- John Simpson (Clemson) 6’4/330: Simpson operates well in small spaces between the tackles by utilizing his elite strength. Once Simpson sets his feet beneath him, he is nearly impossible to move. Many scouts believe Simpson is the best pass protecting guard in the draft.
- Trey Smith (Tennessee) 6’6/320: Smith is extremely versatile and can play the guard and tackle position equally well. Smith slips down on my list only because of health issues (blood clots in his lungs); which could affect his draft status. However; when on the field, Smith is a dominant run/pass blocker with natural athleticism.
Final Thoughts: The Giants could be in the market for an offensive guard in the draft; especially if they find one that can play multiple positions.
Kevin Zeiter had a solid season for the Giants, but he is closer to the end of his career with just two years remaining on his contract and perhaps his replacement could be in this draft. Free agency will be a good indication of which direction the Giants could go in the draft.