UNITY TWP., Pa — Keeanu Benton is having an under-the-radar good training camp. The big defensive tackle out of Wisconsin has made some under-the-radar and made a number of pressures yesterday, including batting down some balls at the line of scrimmage.
However, he is impressing the other offensive linemen who have to block him, too. James Daniels has seen Keeanu Benton up close and personal. Benton himself watches lots of Grady Jarrett and D.J. Reader, who he sees as players very similar to him. But Daniels sees someone else in Benton — Packers defensive tackle Kenny Clark.
“He reminds me a lot of Kenny Clark,” Daniels said. “You look at his explosiveness and frame and they’re similar. The way Keeanu goes about rushing the passer, I see a lot there. They’re both explosive, stout, and strong. He is a guy I see a lot in Keeanu.”
Clark is only 27 and is a two-time Pro Bowler, so that is big praise from Daniels, who has seen Clark plenty of times from playing against him in Chicago while Clark is still kicking it in Green Bay. The one thing that sticks out about Benton is his frame. Benton looks like the hulk. It’s an elite from for a nose tackle or defensive tackle, but Benton has played anywhere from a 0 to a 3-technique.
“I feel like I have some untapped pass rush potential,” Benton said. “You know, I feel comfortable in run defense, but I think I can take my game to the next level.”
So, Benton, around plenty of former Badgers teammates, will have a chance to make that a reality. There is no doubt that the team sees a vision for him as a pass rusher in the future. But for now, Benton is going to be a nose tackle who can come into sub-packages and make some noise there.