Round 5, 156th Overall: Keeanu Benton, IDL (Wisconsin)
In the fifth round, the Buffalo Bills turn their attention to the line on the other side of the ball and select defensive tackle Keeanu Benton. This is another position that the Buffalo Bills are going to have to address with three set to be free agents after the year (Vernon Butler, Harrison Phillips, Justin Zimmer).
The Bills also could cut veteran Star Lotulelei, who started the year well but has been dealing with injuries on and off for most of the season. In the fifth round, general manager Brandon Beane finds Lotulelei’s eventual replacement in Keeanu Benton out of Wisconsin who is 6’3″ and 313 pounds.
The scouting report by Kyle Crabbs at The Draft Network describes a player that would be perfect alongside Ed Oliver on the interior of this defensive line:
"This is a traditional nose tackle who has shown some bright flashes in stacking up centers and two-gapping at the point of attack. I appreciate how textbook Benton looks when he’s set on his base, his pads are low and he’s able to punch and extend to stack the block. You don’t expect to get the kind of fluidity and initial pop that you see from Benton, either — he’s a better athlete than your run of the mill nose tackle."
Crabbs also notes in his scouting report that Benton also wrestled in high school, which certainly would appeal to Sean McDermott.