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'15 NFL Draft: Bennett analysis


JACKSONVILLE – A tough day for Michael Bennett made the Jaguars' good day that much better.

Bennett, a defensive tackle from Ohio State University, was projected by some analysts to be a second- round or possibly even a first-round selection in the 2015 NFL Draft.

Instead, he not only didn't get selected in Round 1 Thursday, he slid through Friday's second and third rounds – and through the fourth and fifth rounds – before the Jaguars selected him with the No. 180 selection in Round 6 Saturday.

If that made it a difficult day for Bennett, he said it didn't feel difficult once the Jaguars made the selection.

"I said at the (NFL Scouting) Combine: the whole goal is just to get drafted," Bennett said shortly after his selection. "The round doesn't really matter. I got to probably one of the best fits in the league with Jacksonville: a great team, a great coaching staff, a great city.

"I'm not disappointed by any means."

Bennett said his agents stressed to him that the Jaguars may have been the best scheme fit for his skills of any NFL team.

"I really wanted to come here the whole time," he said. "I'm just thankful they pulled the trigger and picked me."

Roell speculated that some of Bennett's slip may have been because of scheme fit. The Jaguars see Bennett as a pure four-three three-technique defensive tackle, a position that depends largely upon quickness, penetrating and pressuring the quarterback. Roell said a 3-4-based team might not have had Bennett as high on its draft board.

"Mike has what you look for in a three technique," Roell said, citing quickness, intelligence, instincts, hands and quickness. "There are a lot of things you like in Mike as far as being a scheme fit in our defense."

Said Jaguars Defensive Coordinator Bob Babich, "We think he's a very good player and obviously comes from a great program. He's a very good person also."

Bennett, whose parents each attended West Point, scored a 43 on the pre-draft Wonderlic test.

"It's exciting to have a kid like that here," Roell said.

Bennett (6-feet-2, 293 pounds), a  third-team All-America selection as a senior and a two-time second-team All-Big 10 selection, played all four seasons at Ohio State. He had 18 career sacks at Ohio State, including seven this past season.

"Any time you have a guy with that kind of first-step quickness and quick hands, you've got a chance," Roell said.

Said Bennett: "I feel like inside pass rusher is my thing."

The Jaguars drafted Ohio State product Mike Bennett in the sixth round of the 2015 NFL Draft.

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