Even though former University of Wisconsin center Travis Frederick posted a subpar 40 time and bench press at the combine, he felt confident enough in his own abilities not to try and improve on either performance at the Badgers’ pro day.
Frederick ran the 40 in 5.58 seconds, tied for second-slowest among the 48 offensive linemen at the combine. He also was below average on the bench press, with 21 repetitions of 225 pounds.
But he didn’t sound concerned with either of those numbers and only took part in position drills at the McClain Center on Wednesday with representatives from 30 of 32 NFL teams present.
“I was just trying to do the things that are important for us (linemen) and wanted to show I’m good at those things,” Frederick said.
“I think what’s important is being able to do the drills and show you’re athletic, and your game film and everything like that. Running a slow 40 doesn’t necessarily mean you’re not that good of an offensive lineman, it just means that you don’t run a good 40. ... I certainly don’t run a fast 40.”
As for the bench press, the UW program does not train for a high number of reps, which has led to poor results for some of its linemen entering the draft.
“I think 21 is a respectable number,” Frederick said not doing the bench press. “It may not be where I thought I needed to be. But here at Wisconsin, we don’t do reps, we go out to be as strong as we can on game day. We do a lot of low-rep stuff. I think I’m pretty good at that.”
The UW program also emphasizes functional strength and was known for doing creative workouts under former strength and conditioning coach Ben Herbert.
“Some people believe in it more than others,” Frederick said of the bench press. “I know myself, my one-rep max and my functional strength are much higher.”