2022 NFL Draft Scouting Report: Darian Kinnard

  • Darian Kinnard, 6-4/324

  • Offensive Tackle

  • Kentucky

  • Darian Kinnard Scouting Report
    By Charlie Campbell

  • Thick build
  • Strong upper body
  • Reliable pass protector
  • Long arms – 35.63 inches
  • Has quick enough feet for RT
  • Recoverability; can stop rushes after initial move upfield
  • Strength to sustain blocks
  • Athletic for his size
  • Gets a push as a run blocker
  • Twists and manipulates blockers
  • Strong hands
  • Physical
  • Fighter; physical demeanor
  • Blocks with a mean streak
  • Punishes defenders
  • Lots of experience
  • Ready to compete

  • Weaknesses:
  • Feet can get crossed up
  • Feet keep him at RT, or move to guard in NFL
  • Will bend at the waist
  • Can lunge after defenders
  • Loses balance sometimes late in plays
  • Slight stiffness that makes him more of a RT
  • Has some technique that needs to be cleaned up
  • Lacks good intangibles
  • Struggles with coaching

  • Summary: Over the past few years, Kentucky has produced a lot go tough offensive linemen for the NFL. While they may not have elite skill sets, they have been coached well on the fundamentals and all bring a gritty, nasty streak to the point of attack. Kinnard broke into the Wildcats’ starting lineup in 2019 and opened up a lot of holes for running quarterback Lynn Bowden. Kinnard continued to play well in 2020, and he was even better as a senior in 2021. Kinnard lost weight after 2020 and had an excellent final season helping to open holes for Chris Rodriguez while protecting quarterback Will Levis.

    Kinnard is a reliable contributor in the ground game where his strong upper body helps him tie up defenders. Off the snap, Kinnard has the power and heavy hands to shock defenders and rock them backward. He can bull defenders backward and push them out of their gaps. With a mean streak and tenacity, Kinnard blocks through the whistle and looks to be a bully on the field. On top of being able to get a push, Kinnard is able to twist and manipulate defenders to turn them away or push them out of their gap. Kinnard is a heavy and thick blocker, but he demonstrates surprising quickness and athleticism for a big offensive tackle, showing a better than expected ability to be effective in space. As a run blocker, Kinnard would be a fine fit in either a power-man or a zone scheme.

    As a pass blocker, Kinnard has enough quickness and length to thrive on the edge. He uses his upper and lower body strength to hold his ground on bull rushes, with his size helping him to recover well. Thanks in part to his long arms, Kinnard does a nice job of tying up defenders and keeping them from getting anywhere with second efforts. He also has the power and strength to solidly stop rushes after they get some initial penetration upfield, and that gives his quarterback adequate time to get the ball out. Kinnard sustains blocks well, using his strong hands to tie up defenders. Kinnard could have some problems with elite NFL speed rushers, and that is why he is more of a right tackle for the next level.

    Kinnard also could move inside as a pro and be a tremendous right guard. That might maximize his skill set at the next level. He also would offer the ability to move to tackle if there was an injury and the line needed to be adjusted.

    Kinnard hurt his draft stock after the season at both the Senior Bowl and the NFL Scouting Combine. Sources say Kinnard was not abused in Mobile and was not get dominated by the all-star defensive linemen. On the reps he lost, however, Kinnard was not interested in the coaching points to teach him why he lost that rep and how he could correct his technique. According to sources from multiple teams, not being coachable was a bad impression for Kinnard to give pro evaluators.

    Kinnard was also being coached by the Detroit Lions staff that just produced an excellent rookie year for offensive tackle Penei Sewell. Sewell was the youngest player in the NFL in 2021 and had sat out the 2020 college football season. But after some early growing moments, Sewell was superb in the second half of the year starting at left and right tackle for Detroit. The Lions staff also developed guard Jonah Jackson into having his first Pro Bowl season in 2021. Thus, Kinnard had a great opportunity to get coaching points from proven good NFL coaching staff and work on those issues to show technical improvement during pre-draft workouts. Team sources say Kinnard also did not impress in combine interviews.

    For the 2022 NFL Draft, Kinnard looks like a second-day pick who could compete quickly as a starting right tackle or guard.

    Player Comparison: Morgan Moses. I can see a similar style with Kinnard and Moses. Moses (6-6, 330) was an astute third-round pick by Washington in 2014 and has become a solid right tackle in the NFL. Kinnard is similar in size and skill set. If he stays at right tackle, Kinnard could be a blocker who is comparable to Moses.


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