2020 NFL Draft Scouting Report: Javon Kinlaw

  • Javon Kinlaw, 6-5/315

  • Defensive Tackle

  • South Carolina

  • Javon Kinlaw Scouting Report
    By Charlie Campbell

  • Excellent physical skill set with speed, strength and length
  • Long arms – 34.5 inches
  • Superb ability to keep guards away from him
  • Good athlete
  • Quick at the point of attack
  • Instinctive
  • Dangerous interior pass-rusher
  • Closes on quarterbacks in a hurry
  • Disruptive
  • Strong hands
  • Uses hands and feet at same time
  • Technically sound interior defensive lineman
  • Splash plays
  • Quick feet
  • Good get-off
  • Ability to shed blocks
  • Strong at the point of attack
  • Agile
  • Can bull through offensive linemen
  • Quality run defender
  • Not easy to move at the line of scrimmage
  • Good vision
  • Carries weight well
  • Successful against good competition
  • Ready to contribute quickly
  • Extremely versatile
  • Can play a variety of 4-3 or 3-4 techniques
  • Durable

  • Weaknesses:
  • Could stand to improve pass-rushing moves for the NFL
  • Doesn’t always produce up to his skill set
  • Gets in trouble when he stands up too high

  • Summary: After starting out in the junior college ranks, Kinlaw joined South Carolina and quickly became one of the toughest defensive linemen in college football. He debuted for the Gamecocks in 2018 and collected 4.5 sacks, 38 tackles and five passes batted. As a senior, Kinlaw was even better, totaling 35 tackles with six sacks and two passes defended. To end his collegiate career, Kinlaw dominated at the Senior Bowl and was the best player in Mobile. Kinlaw showed plug-and-play starting potential for the NFL, overwhelming the all-star offensive linemen.

    Kinlaw is dangerous in the pass rush. He is a quick defender at the point of attack who has the ability to fire his gap to get penetration upfield. With his superb length, Kinlaw does a phenomenal job of keeping guards from getting into his chest, keeping them at an arm’s length and making it difficult for them to sustain blocks. With his natural and functional strength, he can push through blocks and can close in an instant on the quarterback. For the NFL, Kinlaw could stand to expand his variety in his pass-rushing moves to get after the quarterback.

    Kinlaw is a solid run defender, too. He has a strong, thick lower body to hold his ground at the line of scrimmage. He fills his gap and can be tough to move. Kinlaw is able to eat up his block and prevent holes from opening up. He would often shed his block to stuff a run near the line of scrimmage or fire into the backfield to disrupt a run off the snap. He also gives an effort to make tackles in the ground game downfield.

    Kinlaw fits any defense at the next level. With his quickness, he could be a three-technique defensive tackle in a 4-3 defense. Also in a 4-3, he also could play nose tackle given his size and strength. He has enough length and strength to play end in a 3-4 defense that rushes from the inside in the sub package. With Kinlaw’s skill set, production, and years of experience against top competition, he looks like a safe pick and a top-16 selection this April.

    Player Comparison: Richard Seymour. Some team sources have compared Kinlaw to Seymour, which makes sense. They are almost identical in size and both have the versatility defenders to play a variety of techniques up front. Seymour (6-6, 317) had an excellent career for the Patriots and Raiders. Kinlaw has similar potential for his NFL career.


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