2021 NFL Draft Scouting Report: Ben Clevelandby Lee Wehry March 15, 2021 0 comments
Despite being a four-star recruit, it took Ben Cleveland needed time to develop before becoming a full-time starter for the Georgia Bulldogs. Once given the opportunity, He made the most of it and was recognized as a first-team ALL-SEC lineman in 2020. He’s a genuine mountain of a human being and plays with a toughness and determination that teams will appreciate. Cleveland has the physicality and motivation to be a starter in the NFL and a steal at where he’ll be drafted. Let’s take a look at where he shines and where he could stand to improve heading into the draft.
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Name: Ben Cleveland
Class: Redshirt Senior
Weight: 354 lbs
One look at Cleveland, and it’s obvious this man belongs in the NFL. Standing at 6’6″, and weighing in at 354 lbs, this mammoth of a blocker eats up space the way he probably eats up dinner. He has the one thing that you can’t teach, and he has it in abundance.
Arm measurables could be an issue for Cleveland. For someone so large, his wingspan (79 1/8″), arm length (33″), and hand size (9 3/4″) are all below league average. This will relegate him to a guard in the NFL. Cleveland is at his best inline at the point of attack, has a good initial punch, and gets defenders off balance more often than not.
Foot Work (6/10)
Cleveland possesses solid agility and good balance out of his stance. He drives through his blocks and is a true finisher, always looking to put someone on the ground. He’s much better at the line of scrimmage than he is downfield. He has a tendency to get lost looking to make an impact in space.
Pass Blocking (6/10)
With adequate balance and bend, Cleveland maintains a solid foundation in the passing game. Due to his size, defenders have issues when trying to blow him off the ball. However, that strength is also his downfall when things break down. Due to his length, initial missteps often lead to a blown assignment, and his recovery leaves much to be desired.
Run Blocking (9/10)
This is where Cleveland truly excels. He uses his sheer size and strength to maul defenders at the line of scrimmage, and he does it with the ferocity of someone who enjoys what he does. Power schemes were designed to be run behind this man, as he’s dominant at the point of attack, opening up lanes between the tackles for his running back.
There’s an awful lot to like about Cleveland. He’s a giant man with a nasty streak who wants nothing more than to lay out defenders. He may not display top-end athleticism, but he more than makes up for it with effort. Cleveland could easily develop into a low-end starter or viable backup in the NFL if he can work to clean up his footwork. Unfortunately, he missed out on his opportunity to increase his draft stock at the Senior Bowl, where an ankle injury kept him sidelined for most of the week. With his physical traits and play style, a team could likely be getting a steal in the draft given where he’s projected to go.
Final Grade (37/50): Fourth Round Pick
Player Comp: Frank Ragnow