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2022 NFL Draft Profile: Darian Kinnard

Darian Kinnard played tackle in college and excelled at it, but he profiles more as one of the top guard prospects in the 2022 NFL Draft. Big and powerful, Kinnard was named the SEC's best blocker last season as the recipient of the conference's Jacobs Blocking Trophy, and he should be just as effective in the pros. There may be a slight learning curve with a move inside, but more than enough potential for an NFL team to use an early-round pick on the former Kentucky Wildcat.

(This profile is one of 230 featured in the Athlon Sports 2022 NFL Draft Guide. With in-depth scouting reports on the top prospects, position rankings, and more, no source will have you better prepared for draft day. Purchase a copy online today, the digital edition for instant access, or look for it on newsstands everywhere.)

Darian Kinnard Draft Profile

College: Kentucky
Class: Sr.
Height: 6'5"
Weight: 340

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Strong Points

A tackle in college, Kinnard has the massive size — and matching power — to thrive with a move inside at the next level. He locks onto defenders with a strong grip and drives them off the ball, and he’s enough of an athlete to get out and hit targets at the second level. In pass protection, he’s a boulder of a man with the kind of wide base and anchor ability that allow him to hold his ground, and he moves well enough to have played outside exclusively in the SEC.

Weak Points

Kinnard isn’t a natural mover in pass protection, and while he has the length and upper-body strength to bully opponents, he often struggles to time his punch and maximize his power. He played exclusively at tackle in college, but playing inside typically involves a higher level of processing due to blitzers coming from the middle of the field and stunts coming from either side.


He might be able to hold up at right tackle in a power scheme, but Kinnard’s NFL future is more likely inside, where he’ll have to prove he has the pre- and post-snap processing ability to thrive. Regardless, he’ll appeal to offenses looking to establish a physical tone.

Final Grade: 1st/2nd Round

Athlon Sports 2022 NFL Draft Guide

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