Fully equipped with the first press credential ever issued in NYGMen.com history, I will be making the trek out to Edison, NJ this coming Tuesday for a business seminar featuring special guests Mike Ditka and… one Brad Benson, a G-Man left tackle from 1977 through 1987 who made the Pro-Bowl in ’86.

The seminar, one of those “success on and off the field” type things sponsored by the New Jersey-based sales and marketing organization Move Ahead 1, will be held at the Edison’s Holiday Inn at 3050 Woodbridge Avenue, from 8:00 a.m. to 12:00 p.m. this Tuesday.

If you’re reading this blog, you probably know what Mike Ditka’s been up to the past ten or so years since the Saints/Ricky Williams wedding dress experiment didn’t work out. Most recently, he’s fighting the good fight for minimally adequate benefits for ex-NFL players, although Dave Duerson, a former Bear who was also a member of the Giants 1990 Super Bowl team, has questioned Ditka’s genuineness on the issue.

Benson, an Altoona, PA native, has settled on a 40-acre farm in Hillsborough, NJ with his wife and kids while running Brad Benson Hyundai and Mitsubishi, the largest Hyundai dealer in the state.

Here’s a great article on Benson written earlier this year by Michael Eisen on Giants.com, recalling how the undersized Penn State graduate – who was drafted in the eight round by the Patriots and then cut before the G-Men signed him – scrapped together a successful NFL career, due in no small part to a constant barrage of Bill Parcells ball-busting.

Here’s a Benson quote from the piece:

“I didn’t have the most athletic ability in the world so I had to be at 120 percent all the time. I was probably, on the whole offensive line, the worst athlete of the bunch…. Everything I did and achieved was through motivation. And Bill knew that. And he knew that he had to do certain things to keep me on top of my game. So Parcells had an excellent way of pushing people’s buttons without having them fall apart.”

(Did Parcells retain his way of “pushing people’s buttons without having them fall apart” when he became a celebrity and fell in love with his reputation as a dick? I don’t know. I still love Parcells and I always will, but the guy changed, man. The guy changed.)

Benson was the only Pro- Bowler on an ’86 O-Line that also included Billy Ard at right guard, Bart Oates at Center, Chris Godfrey at left guard, and Karl Nelson at right tackle. (Bill Parcells dubbed them “The Suburbanites,” and I frankly don’t know why. Do any of you out there? If so, I’m curious. Otherwise, I’ll ask Benson.)

Because of the Giants historical reputation for having a strong defense, it’s easy to overlook how good our offense was throughout the mid-to-late 80s. In 1985, we finished sixth in the NFL with 399 points. In ’86, our 371 points placed us eighth. 1987, because of the strike, doesn’t really count, but in 1988 we scored 359 points to finish eighth again.

So the perception of the Giant teams during this era – excellent defense and league-average offense – just doesn’t hold true. Our defense was sick, but our offense was really good too.

(Trivia Question: What was the highest scoring season in Giants history?

Answer: 2005. We scored 422 points to finish third in the NFL.)

So it’s gonna be fun for me to meet Benson. If any of you out there can make it, it would be really cool meeting some of you and talking Giants football into the afternoon. Anybody have any suggestions of what to ask Benson?