Derrick Brown vs Javon Kinlaw

TheCardFan

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THOR'S INTERIOR DL RANKINGS
BY THOR NYSTROM
April 3, 2020, 3:23 pm ET
Updated On: April 3, 2020, 3:23 pm ET


1. Javon Kinlaw (South Carolina) | 6'5/324

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SPARQ percentile: N/A

Adjusted SPARQ: N/A

RAS: N/A

Comp: Richard Seymour

When Javon Kinlaw was a kid, the roof of one of the houses he and his mom were staying at caved in. He at various times lived without electricity or running water. When there was no home at all, and there wasn’t for some time, he would crash in friends’ basements. A prodigious football talent with offers from Alabama, USC, Clemson, Ole Miss, South Carolina, Florida, and a host of others, Kinlaw first had to enroll in the JUCO ranks to get his grades up. He arrived at 280 pounds. When he realized the food was free, after a life of poverty, “I started going crazy," Kinlaw said.

Kinlaw ultimately honored his original commitment to South Carolina as one of the top JUCO recruits in the country, but showed up on campus a year later, in the lead-up to the 2017 season, weighing 347 pounds. That year, he got his humbling, playing only part-time snaps despite his prodigious talent level while coaches challenged him to get in shape and dedicate himself. The message sunk in, and Kinlaw showed up in 2018 with a remade body, almost 40 pounds lighter, and as a different player. He was a self-actualized monster.

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The improvement has been rapid ever since. Between 2017-2019, his PFF grades jumped from 74.1 to 85.0 to 89.4. He’s a freight train off the snap, ridiculously quick with strong anticipation. Despite his massive, rangy frame, Kinlaw fires in low, giving his man a jolt in the shoulder pads with those bear paws while his hips explode through contact. He consistently moves offensive linemen backwards. Kinlaw’s bull rush is the stuff of legend. Like Aroldis Chapman’s fastball in his prime, Kinlaw’s bull rush is so vaunted that offensive linemen are constantly on their heels preparing for it, which sets up his counters.

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Kinlaw is more than a one-trick pony, with the agility to beat his man with his feet and a slick club game that keeps opponents guessing and deprives them of their balance. Kinlaw uses his length to create distance and his power and athleticism as the getaway car. Interior penetration wrecks game plans, and few prospects come into the league with the skillset to consistently get it like Kinlaw. He was borderline unblockable the past few years, posting absurd PFF pass-rushing grades of 88.7 and 90.7, respectively, in 2018 and 2019. Last year, he finished No. 2 in the country in PFF’s pass-rush win rate stat among interior defensive linemen. And that was with South Carolina playing him out of position at nose tackle for about one-third of his snaps in 2019!

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The rapid developmental progression he’s shown over the past few years ought to have NFL teams thinking long and hard about exactly where the ceiling ends. Kinlaw’s weaknesses – he needs to play with a bit more discipline, he could stand to add more pass-rushing moves, he sometimes plays too high, he could use his hands more effectively – are all fixable and assuredly next up on his hit list. With a few technical tweaks, he’s going to be a scary, scary dude to deal with at the next level.
 
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2. Derrick Brown (Auburn) | 6'4/326

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SPARQ percentile: 32.9

Adjusted SPARQ: .45

RAS: 6.09

Comp: Kris Jenkins (Lance Zierlein)

Brown signed with Auburn as a ballyhooed consensus top-10 overall recruit in the class of 2016, choosing the Tigers over Alabama and Georgia. He was a starter by his sophomore year, and an unmitigated star by his junior campaign. Honestly, I thought I was going to be writing this capsule this time last year. Instead, Brown, a likely 2019 late first-round pick, stunned the NFL by returning to campus for his senior year.

After a monstrous senior year which included 12.5 TFL and finalist shoutouts from the Bednarik and Outland awards, he’s likely now headed for the top-10. A pocket-collapsing, game plan-wrecking menace of a player, Brown told ESPN’s Trey Wingo that he studies and patterns his game after Ndamukong Suh, Chris Jones and Fletcher Cox.

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A rangy tackle with huge power, Brown gobbles up interior linemen for breakfast, mucking up the middle and freeing up his friends on the second level to party. He gets on top of linemen in a snap off the ball, dictating terms by getting his strong mitts into their shoulder pads as though they were a steering wheel. Not just a facilitator, Brown’s upper-body power, hand-strength and lower-body agility allow for shedding and dropping the ball-carrier.

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He’s going to be a fabulous NFL run stuffer. The translation of Brown’s pass-rushing is a more interesting topic. Brown did not test well at the NFL Combine – out of all defensive linemen in attendance, he finished No. 34 in the 40-yard dash, tied for No. 29 in the vertical, No. 24 in the broad jump, dead last in the three-cone and No. 20 in the 20-yard shuttle. His game isn’t built around athleticism. In fact, he has a sort of marauder style, playing high, knocking heads, clubbing fools.

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At the highest level of college, he was an extremely disruptive pass-rusher, posting a sterling PFF pass-rushing grade of 85.0-plus in each of the past two years with 37 hurries. But Brown’s elite quickness and power were simply overwhelming for collegiate interior linemen – will the pillaging style play as well in the NFL in this phase when Brown isn’t winning a half-step head start on every play along with an enormous strength advantage? If he’s an elite bull-rusher with a few slick counter moves, he’ll still absolutely disrupt, just perhaps not enough to justify his current hype level.
 

AZman5103

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Kinlaws red flags are an injury history, and inconsistency. To me, you don't want those things in a top 10 pick. If we trade down, he's totally on the radar, and IMO could end up being a pro-bowler as a 3/4 DE...but I think Brown is also a solid pick.

Im sticking with my wishlist of 1. Defensive Stud (Young, Okudah, Simmons, Brown) 2. WR (Lamb, Ruggs, Jeudy) or 3. OT (Wills, Thomas, Wirfs, Bechton)

Those are in order of preference for me.
 

Harry

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If you want to stop the run, Brown’s your man. If you want a more balanced player, but there may be motor problems. He’s an interesting risk/reward.
 

WhyAlwaysMe

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Brown has “elite quickness” and a 1%tile 3-cone for his position. Doesn’t compute.
 

Finito

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If you want to stop the run, Brown’s your man. If you want a more balanced player, but there may be motor problems. He’s an interesting risk/reward.

Brown has motor problem? Not even
 

Finito

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Flat out one of the most insane plays you’ll ever see a DT make. The pass rush, change of direction and the chase down speed for a man that big is crazy
 

cardpa

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If the pick at #8 is between Kindlaw and Brown I would lean toward Kindlaw because he's a far superior pass rusher. Pressure up the middle is so disruptive to a passing game and he can provide that.
 

Ohcrap75

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Brown reminds me of Linval Joseph. Just going back and forth if that is good value at eight with other prospects that will be available.

Kinlaw has a higher upside as a pass rusher, but has a lower floor than Brown. He feels a little risky inside top ten for me.
 
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