Kyron Johnson NFL Draft 2022: Scouting Report for Kansas DL

BR NFL Scouting DepartmentContributor I

MOBILE, AL - FEBRUARY 05: National linebacker Kyron Johnson of Kansas (20) during the Reese's Senior Bowl on February 5, 2022 at Hancock Whitney Stadium in Mobile, Alabama.  (Photo by Michael Wade/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images)
Michael Wade/Icon Sportswire via Getty Images

HEIGHT: 6'0"



— Energetic player. Takes off at full speed to the ball and does not stop.

— Above-average range. Can get to the perimeter and finish plays.

— Good quickness. Can manipulate and beat blockers in space.

— Consistent tackler. Strikes well and reliably brings players to the ground.


— Terribly short arms. Makes it easy for OL to overtake him.

— Play strength is a concern. Struggles to punch and control blocks as well as anchor in the run game.

— Lackluster acceleration and bend around the edge.

— Played edge in college, but will almost certainly have to play off the ball in the NFL. Tough projection.


12 G, 63 TOT, 8.5 TFL, 6.5 SK, 1 PD, 2 FR, 4 FF


— 3-star recruit in 2017.

— Three-year starter.


Kyron Johnson was a quick, sawed-off pass-rusher in college, but he will likely need to be moved off the ball to find a role in the pros.

Johnson primarily played on the edge for Kansas. He flashed a decent first step as well as the foot quickness and suddenness to beat offensive tackles when given room to work with.

However, more of Johnson’s value came in the run game. He proved to be a high-energy player in space who could chase plays to the perimeter or from the backside thanks to his speed. No matter the angle, Johnson typically showed off reliable tackling skills in those situations.

With that said, Johnson did not quite show NFL pass-rushing traits despite his success there in college. He often struggled to accelerate to the edge, and he did not show consistent bend when trying to turn the corner. Pair that with his short arms and below-average play strength, and it becomes hard to imagine Johnson doing much as a pass-rusher other than on twists and creative blitz paths.

Johnson's film suggests he may struggle in the NFL as a run defender on the edge, too. Despite good range and chase skills, he does not fare well when plays are headed his way. He tends to give up space when trying to anchor, and his short arms often allow him to get swallowed up by offensive linemen.

Johnson will be a linebacker conversion project. His speed, quickness and general scrappiness may serve him better as a run-and-chase "Will" off-ball linebacker. With that said, Johnson's short arms and play strength along with the learning curve for a new position will make it tough for him to have an impact early in his career.

GRADE: 5.4 (Backup/UDFA with Roster Potential - UDFA)




Written by B/R NFL Scout Derrik Klassen