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Ryan Bartholomew leads the way with 34 bench press reps

Alec Lemon

The offensive linemen hit the weight room today as the NFL Scouting Combine workouts got underway, and a center who’s not considered one of the top prospects did show that he’s the top lifter.

Syracuse center Ryan Bartholomew was the leader, with 34 reps of 225 pounds on the bench press.

A three-year starter and team captain at Syracuse, Bartholomew is viewed as a likely late-round pick or undrafted free agent, but his bench press performance might open a few eyes. If nothing else, being the strongest offensive lineman at the Combine suggests that Bartholomew (pictured holding 193-pound teammate Alec Lemon) takes his strength and conditioning work seriously.

Colorado offensive tackle Nate Solder, who’s widely regarded as the best offensive lineman in the draft, reportedly turned in a disappointing showing, with just 21 reps. There’s been talk that the 6-foot-8, 319-pound Solder ought to bulk up, and his bench press numbers would seem to support that assertion.

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19 Responses to “Ryan Bartholomew leads the way with 34 bench press reps”
  1. ytownie says: Feb 25, 2011 4:52 PM

    Solder is probably not used to the thin air of Indianapolis

  2. profootballwalk says: Feb 25, 2011 4:56 PM

    I’d rather have an offensive lineman working with a wrestling coach than laying on his back in the gym all day. Workout wonders are a dime a dozen.

  3. thereisalwaysnextyear says: Feb 25, 2011 4:58 PM

    Has PFT looked back at previous combines to see how important this stat is to projecting success of linemen in the NFL? Does it matter that the top prospect only did 21 historically?

  4. 2011to2020lions says: Feb 25, 2011 5:11 PM

    Lions will take him in the 5th round to be a starter in 2012

  5. mharenza says: Feb 25, 2011 5:12 PM

    Doesn’t Solder have ridiculously long arms? I confess that I do not know much about the mechanics of bench pressing, but it stands to reason that the longer ones arms, the more difficult it would be to put up a high number rep wise.

  6. house068 says: Feb 25, 2011 5:14 PM

    At 6’8″ and playing tackle, his arms are probably pretty long. I would bet that it isn’t because he isn’t strong but has farther to push.

  7. johnnysteel says: Feb 25, 2011 5:30 PM

    21 reps with 225lbs is pretty weak when you weigh 319 pounds and a up and coming “pro athlete”. Nate Solder is either real lazy or has some bad genetics. Bad timing with an illness could be a cause also.
    On a good day I can hit an average 25 reps with 225lbs and I’m 215lbs, but then again I’ve been training for 23+ years.

  8. granadafan says: Feb 25, 2011 5:42 PM

    Teams would rather have the guy who is flexible and can move well than the stiff and muscled up body builder who can push and that’s it.

  9. kc4life7 says: Feb 25, 2011 5:55 PM

    21 reps with 225lbs is pretty weak when you weigh 319 pounds and a up and coming “pro athlete”. Nate Solder is either real lazy or has some bad genetics. Bad timing with an illness could be a cause also.
    On a good day I can hit an average 25 reps with 225lbs and I’m 215lbs, but then again I’ve been training for 23+ years.

    __________________________________

    I think you meant to say “then again I’ve been juiced up for 15 years”.

  10. jpmelon says: Feb 25, 2011 6:20 PM

    @mharenza

    couldn’t agree more….shorter guys usually have better results with the bench press due to arm length (a basic understanding of the concept of leverage proves this)…..if solder has the talent to not let guys get undernieth him after the snap, his bench-press reps won’t be all too important in the long run.

    I’d like to know what the guy can squat….I think that is a better way to rank the potential of an offensive lineman.

  11. duanethomas says: Feb 25, 2011 6:37 PM

    @johnnysteel. Are you a midget?

  12. PurpleRaid18 says: Feb 25, 2011 6:37 PM

    “On a good day I can hit an average 25 reps with 225lbs and I’m 215lbs, but then again I’ve been training for 23+ years.”
    ____________________________________

    Well if you’ve been training for 23+ years, you’d know that Force = Distance x Weight. The kid has extremely long arms, he’s not “weak”

  13. hobartbaker says: Feb 25, 2011 6:38 PM

    After raising the barbell as high as he could 34 times, Ryan finally realized nothing was going to change, and it would keep coming back to him unless he set it back in the stand the way he found it.

  14. carolinethedog says: Feb 26, 2011 12:08 AM

    After raising the barbell as high as he could 34 times, Ryan finally realized nothing was going to change, and it would keep coming back to him unless he set it back in the stand the way he found it.
    ______________________________________

    ZING….wow, hobartbaker….I think you finally hit a decent joke. That’s actually not bad at all, good for you.

  15. smootysmoot says: Feb 26, 2011 12:21 AM

    @johnnysteel

    Hahahahaha. Whatever!!!!!!! R u really trying to impress a bunch of dudes????

  16. carolinethedog says: Feb 26, 2011 12:25 AM

    By the way, Jay Cutler put 225 up 23 times……just sayin’.

  17. johnnysteel says: Feb 26, 2011 7:56 AM

    I think you meant to say “then again I’ve been juiced up for 15 years”.

    ————————————————-

    Trust me if I were “juicing” I’d be throwing up 35+ reps. I’ve been very consistant and dedicated for over 23 years. I have not taken a full week off in 10+ years. Talking about ignorance here….wow.

    So kc4life7, stop drinking the Hatorade and get off the couch and wishing what could have been.

    …and no I’m not a midget, I’m 6′. LOL!

  18. brasho says: Feb 26, 2011 8:02 AM

    Those of you commenting and giving positive feedback slamming the importance of the bench are clueless.

    #1 The bench does not show power, it shows weightroom dedication and work ethic.

    #2 All athletes at the combine are strong, whether they do 21 reps or 34.

    #3 Having great work ethic and dedication in the gym to getting better and stronger does not necessarily make a guy project to the NFL, but if the guy can play and plays as well as the next guy that ISN’T as dedicated… then the dedicated guy will last longer, play better, and stay healthier over the long haul.

    As for those clueless enough to defend Nate Solder… 21 is pretty pathetic. Who cares if he is 6’7+? Tony Boselli and Jumpy Geathers were both over 6’7 and were the strongest players in the NFL when they played. The long arms excuse isn’t valid and is only used when somebody is making up reasons for why they are weak. This isn’t to say that Solder might not have a huge max bench, he might, he could be naturally very strong, but his dedication in the weightroom is severely lacking.

  19. johnnysteel says: Feb 26, 2011 9:21 AM

    Those of you commenting and giving positive feedback slamming the importance of the bench are clueless.

    #1 The bench does not show power, it shows weightroom dedication and work ethic.

    #2 All athletes at the combine are strong, whether they do 21 reps or 34.

    #3 Having great work ethic and dedication in the gym to getting better and stronger does not necessarily make a guy project to the NFL, but if the guy can play and plays as well as the next guy that ISN’T as dedicated… then the dedicated guy will last longer, play better, and stay healthier over the long haul.

    As for those clueless enough to defend Nate Solder… 21 is pretty pathetic. Who cares if he is 6’7+? Tony Boselli and Jumpy Geathers were both over 6’7 and were the strongest players in the NFL when they played. The long arms excuse isn’t valid and is only used when somebody is making up reasons for why they are weak. This isn’t to say that Solder might not have a huge max bench, he might, he could be naturally very strong, but his dedication in the weightroom is severely lacking

    ————————————————–

    brasho well said!!! My point exactly!!! I could not have said it better!!
    Dedication will get you were you need to go no matter what it might be!!!

    …and there’s no need to impress anybody…I’m just sick of the lazy asses out there coming up with another excuse why they can’t get anywhere in life! Just take a look at all the dislikes on my original post. Lost and clueless!!!

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