Our in-depth analysis for the Buccaneers 2010 draft class continues as take a look at wide receiver Arrelious Benn. Benn, the 6’1”, 219 lb. receiver out of the University of Illinois, was selected with the 7th pick in the 2nd round, 39th overall. Benn joins fellow wide receiver, Mike Williams, in the Bucs new look wide receiving core, an area the Bucs need help in.
Benn is a strong, physical receiver that reminds many around the league as another Anquan Bolden (a large comparison to live up to). Benn came onto the scene in his freshmen year with the Illini, catching 54 balls and totaling 676 yards in the process, both Illini freshman records. He also ran the ball 32 times for 158 (Coach Ron Zook’s spread offense used the Wild Cat option constantly) and had 10 kickoff returns, totaling 280 yards, showing his versatility. Benn was named the Big Ten freshman of the year. His sophomore year saw even bigger numbers, 67 catches and 1055 yards. But his junior season would not be the same; Benn suffered multiple injuries throughout the year and with an offense in chaos at Illinois, Benn’s numbers fell (he still led the team in receptions though).
Benn is a physical receiver, has good speed off the line and runs decent routes. He has a large frame and can use his size to out maneuver corners. He does have elite speed, he will not be able to break away from corners in the NFL, but he may just run a few of them over. His blocking skills and routing running still need work, but coming out of the spread system at Illinois, it is to be expected. Benn is a quick learner and a physical player that will be an immediate impact on the field.
So what can Buc fans expect out of Benn this year? Benn is battling for a starting position, looking to beat out other veteran receivers, such as the blocking expert, Mike Clayton. Benn is poised to have a big season for the Bucs. He is sure handed and a tough receiver that can battle for possession and gives Josh Freeman a reliable target both underneath and down field one on one. Expect Benn to have a good year, he is just too talented not to see the field and don’t be surprised if he is a starter on opening day.