The Detroit Lions lost the right side of their offensive line this offseason.
Right tackle Rick Wagner was a cap casualty and then signed with Green Bay in free agency. Right guard Graham Glasgow signed a multi-year free-agent deal with Denver.
The Lions signed Halapoulivaati Vaitai in free agency, and he's expected to compete with Tyrell Crosby for the right tackle spot.
Detroit also re-signed free agent guard Oday Aboushi, who played in seven games (two starts) and took 160 total snaps at guard for the Lions in 2019.
Benzschawel was signed as a priority free agent after the draft last year, and the Lions coaching staff likes how the former Wisconsin Badger developed behind the scenes as a rookie.
"I think he's coming along as we expected – learning obviously the NFL game and playing a little bit of multiple positions for us," Lions head coach Matt Patricia said back in December when asked about Benzschawel. "He does a good job of moving around especially on the look-teams for us during the week and giving us some different position flexibility there. I think that helps his overall development and his growth.
"I think one of the things that he's done an outstanding job (with) is really his physical training through the course of this season. You can see that showing up through the course of the practice week, especially when we're in pads, and we can see some of that contact stuff."
How big of a leap can Benzschawel take in year two? Even if the Lions believe it can be as big as competing for the starting right guard spot, it won't be a surprise at all if Detroit looks to continue to add to that group.
View photos of Mike O'Hara's top 5 offensive line draft prospects that could interest the Lions.
The NFL Draft later this month is as good a place as any to start the search. Detroit currently has four picks in the top 85 with three picks on Day 2 (one in the second round and two in the third). There's a possibility Detroit looks to bolster the interior of their offensive line in this draft with names like Cesar Ruiz (Michigan), John Simpson (Clemson), Robert Hunt (LSU), Ben Bredeson (Michigan), Netane Muti (Fresno State) and Logan Stenberg (Kentucky) all potential Day 2 fits.
Frank Ragnow (center) and Dahl (left guard) look to be penciled in as starters, but the right guard spot still seems very much in flux as we head closer to the draft.