Ben Jones, C, Georgia
Weight: 303 lbs
Arm Length: 32 1/2″
Hand Size: 9 5/8″
20 Yard Shuttle: 4.74 seconds
3 Cone Drill: 7.95 seconds
40 Yard Dash: 5.41 seconds
Bench Press: 29 reps
Broad Jump: 105.0″
Vertical Jump: 30.5″
NFL Mocks lists the pros and cons of Ben’s game like this:
Good size…does a good job with his shut-gun snaps…quick off the snap…very durable, hasn’t missed any times due to injuries…considered a leader of the Georgia offensive line and has a lot of experience..gets his man to the ground a surprising amount of times (pancakes)…does an okay job blocking in space
I”m being nit-picky here. I think he looks better than he did last year when he was pretty good and there aren’t any huge holes in his game from the games I’ve seen he probably has a lower ceiling than guys like the Pouncey brothers, but he’s a really solid prospect. But some things to keep in mind…Could continue to improve his leverage…Gets a little grabby..more of an anchor and mirror guy than a bullzoder…I think he can also do a better job of blocking the first guy and getting to the second level..some consider Jones as more of a guard prospect, but I disagree….needs to improve his footwork
This is the part where you say “hey, Matthew Stafford went to Georgia!”
Yes, Matthew Stafford did in fact take snaps from Ben Jones at Georgia. Jones played in 13 games, including ten starts at center, as a freshman for the Stafford-led Bulldogs in 2008. Perhaps the Lions prepared for their interview with Ben Jones at the Senior Bowl by getting a primer on Jones form Stafford.
He played early and often and finished his career with 49 starts in total, good enough for third place all-time among offensive linemen at Georgia. Jones landed on the SEC academic honor roll all four years and is noted as a team leader on and off the field.
Where Ben Jones lands in the draft is up for debate. There are a wide-range of possibilities, anything from the second to fourth round would be reasonable. He’s the number 40 player on Wes Bunting’s big board and has a fourth round grade on ESPN.com. CBS Sports lands more in the middle ranking Jones as 84th overall. What these sites do agree on is that Ben Jones is the second best center prospect in this draft behind Wisconsin’s Peter Konz.
Jones may be a bit bigger than Dominic Raiola but he will never be one of the NFL’s bigger centers so in that regard he is similar to Raiola. He’s also a smart player and very comfortable making line calls – another trait he has in common with Raiola. He’s not an explosive player but looks to be a better anchor than Raiola and is improving his power. Ben Jones may not have a Pro Bowl ceiling but he looks to be a similar player to Raiola with more upside.