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...So You Drafted Miles Dieffenbach

Welcome to NFL Draft season! We here at Black Shoe Diaries know that you NFL fans can't possibly know about every single college player. That's why we're here to share with you all we know about some of our favorites. Today, we're going to tell you why you made the wonderful decision to draft Miles Dieffenbach!

Matthew O'Haren-USA TODAY Sports

The Skinny

After coming to Penn State ranked anywhere from the #1 to #5 center in the country, depending on which recruiting database you prefer, Dieffenbach did not disappoint with his play as a Nittany Lion. Miles was a three year starter for PSU, as well as a three year member of the Academic All-Big Ten team. His impact was truly felt at the beginning of the 2014 season, which he missed due to a injury during spring practices. His return to the line not only brought more consistent play from the unit, but a noticeable uptick in their development. Dieffenbach was also known as the team clown, always showing off his humor for the cameras when he got the chance. Miles was named a captain for the 2014 season, along with quarterback Christian Hackenberg.

What You're Getting

Offensive and defensive lines in the NFL today are all about versatility and staying fresh. We are seeing guys be subbed in and out on the lines in an effort to keep everyone at full strength throughout the game more than ever before. Admittedly, this is more of a defensive line trend, but it's something that some teams like to do on the offensive line, as well. This is why I think Miles Dieffenbach is going to get a serious look from NFL teams.

The best coaches/general managers don't draft/sign/trade for players in the hopes of fitting them into their system. The best coaches/general managers draft/sign/trade for players that already fit their system. It's the Pete Carroll/Billy Beane mindset; don't think about players for what they can't do, think about them for what they can do. Every player in the NFL has a strength, that's how they got there in the first place. Miles Dieffenbach is an offensive guard who has an strength that not many other offensive guards have: pass blocking.

I know the readers of Black Shoe Diaries hate when I use the Seahawks for examples, but so be it. Let's think about them for a second. The Seahawks main problem on their offensive line for years, has been their pass blocking on the inside part of the line. Both of their starting guards (though one has moved on to the Jets) were, at times, dominant run blockers. But neither could ever really get anything going in the pass game. What if they had a guard that excels at pass blocking, like Dieffenbach, play on third down? Sure, it only solves one problem area, but it gives the line more versatility. Now, the center can slide down to provide help to the other guard, let Dieffenbach handle his man, and the passing game is a better option. Still want to run the ball? Go ahead and run it right behind the run blocking guard.

Simply put, Dieffenbach gives you the option of having an offensive guard whose focus is different than most. He'll likely never be an every down type of lineman in the NFL, and injuries could certainly get in the way, but he's an intriguing option for a team, like the Seahawks, that has struggled to get consistent pass protection from the interior of the line. Not to mention that you're getting a team leader who has proved during his red shirt sophomore year that he's not afraid to be thrown into the fire. As an added bonus, it's not like he's lost in the running game. He's still a solid run blocker with the potential to get better as he adds strength.

So give Miles a chance. You'll be glad that you did.


Miles Dieffenbach is a bit of a (beautiful) ugly ducking in the football world. An offensive guard whose specialty is pass blocking. He won't be an every down player for your offense, but he will provide you with another option to plug in on passing downs, and improve your line's versatility overall. He's also extremely intelligent, and a born leader.

Links Draft Profile

CBS Sports Draft Profile

Walter Football Guard Rankings (Dieff at #15)

DraftTek Guard Rankings (Dieff at #15)