Meaning of “catch someone off guard” in the English Dictionary

american-english dictionary

"catch someone off guard" in American English

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catch someone off guard

also catch someone by surprise

to surprise someone, esp. in a way that makes the person feel confused or uncertain:

The news caught her completely off guard – she didn't know what to say.
The strength of the storm caught many residents by surprise.

(Definition of “catch someone off guard” from the Cambridge Academic Content Dictionary © Cambridge University Press)