Would the Chicago Bears be interested in TCU edge rusher Ben Banogu?
Ben Banogu was under recruited despite being third-team All-State in high school in Texas. He found his way to UL-Monroe and excelled there, where he eventually transferred to TCU. Banogu put up 8.5 sacks in each of his final two seasons in the Big 12.
Banogu looks like an NFL player. Physically he has the size, and strength to hang with NFL tackles. Banogu is shifty on his feet for his size. His best pass rushing moves come from stunts and inside twists, and he does a good job of getting around offensive lineman and then hitting his gap with speed.
This can show in the run game as well as he understands his gaps and knows when to take his chance shooting into the backfield.
Banogu can show this understanding by doing a strong job in contain as well, and he is not afraid to use his hands to keep himself clean.
Lastly, Ben Banogu is a high effort player, and at the worst special teams can be in his future.
Banogu is used on stunts so often because he struggled to win one-on-one matchups. The combine will be a great test for Ben Banogu, because while he looks like an athlete, he did not show any flexibility on tape.
He is a stand up runner and losses any leverage or bend around the edge with his rush attack. He is slow in his burst off of the football and can typically only win the one-on-one with hand fighting.
More from Bear Goggles On
- Franchise tag and transition tag windows open for Chicago Bears and NFL
- How the Chicago Bears can control the running back market in 2023
- The Chicago Bears can own the city of Chicago moving forward
- Chicago Bears NFL Combine Preview: Quarterback
- 7 best free agent tackle options for Chicago Bears
While Ben Banogu shows discipline and understanding in the run, he can show a lack of balance as well. He can get washed away by traffic in the running game and struggles to hold his base. Missed tackles can be found with him as well.
The Chicago Bears do not have many draft assets, and Ben Banogu is not a player who is going to get drafted in the first three rounds. He has upside as a pass rusher in that he has physical features and effort. However, he is raw in his pass rush plan and lacks balance and flexibility needed to take on tougher athletes.
His understanding, hand fighting, ability to stunt and effort is going to get him a shot in the NFL. However, most of where he will contribute is on special teams until he learns more pass rushing moves. He may never develop the flexibility to be a strong pass rusher, but could develop enough to be a rotational player who adds on special teams.
Still, this is a player the Chicago Bears would look for around rounds 6-7, or even as a UDFA to compete with Isaiah Irving. A player such as Irving, who has been working with NFL trainers has a leg up over Banogu if they were to enter camp in competition. That is where Banogu currently is as a prospect.