NFL Draft Rumors: Lions' Dan Campbell 'Isn't a Fan' of Kayvon Thibodeaux, Exec Says

Tim Daniels@@TimDanielsBRFeatured Columnist IVApril 16, 2022

EUGENE, OR - NOVEMBER 27: Kayvon Thibodeaux #5 of the Oregon Ducks rushes against the Oregon State Beavers at Autzen Stadium on November 27, 2021 in Eugene, Oregon. (Photo by Tom Hauck/Getty Images)
Tom Hauck/Getty Images

Detroit Lions head coach Dan Campbell reportedly "isn't a fan" of Oregon defensive end Kayvon Thibodeaux ahead of the 2022 NFL draft.

Albert Breer of Sports Illustrated reported Friday he hasn't heard from a single source who believes Thibodeaux would be a "culture fit" in Detroit.

"His personality is a lot and you hear the head coach there isn't a fan," an unnamed NFL executive told Breer.

Thibodeaux was an early contender to go No. 1 overall to the Jacksonville Jaguars but, while there's still an outside chance that happens, his draft stock is facing some turmoil.

ESPN's Matt Miller previously reported the 2021 consensus All-American has become one of the "most polarizing prospects" in the class because of what several sources described as "poor" performances during interviews with interested teams.

The 21-year-old California native is an outspoken advocate of himself, which he showcased after his pro-day workout in early April:

Max Torres @mtorressports

Kayvon Thibodeaux at Oregon Pro Day:<br> <br>"The most ridiculous thing I've heard is that I'm not the best player in this draft." <a href="https://twitter.com/DucksDigest?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw">@DucksDigest</a> <a href="https://t.co/DerX5RoFcJ">pic.twitter.com/DerX5RoFcJ</a>

Some NFL talent evaluators may view that as a negative, but there are likely others who aren't scared off by a player with supreme confidence.

Thibodeaux certainly possesses the potential to become a Pro Bowl edge-rusher. He recorded 126 total tackles, 19 sacks, seven passes defended and three forced fumbles in 30 appearances across three seasons with the Ducks.

Based on a combination of college performance and raw talent, he's right there with Michigan's Aidan Hutchinson as the prospects with the highest upside.

It could make Thibodeaux a draft-day steal if he slides down the board.

Meanwhile, Campbell has repeatedly stressed the importance of changing the Lions' culture to turn around a stretch of four straight losing seasons. They posted a 3-13-1 record during his first season in charge of the coaching staff.

In November, he told SI's Michael Rosenberg he was watching closely to how players dealt with adversity throughout the campaign.

"I am highly sensitive and highly alert to, 'What does this guy look like?'" Campbell said. "'What does it look like when you're getting doubled, when the scoreboard is what it is?' I think it's highly telling."

So if Campbell doesn't think Thibodeaux is a culture fit, there's basically no chance he'll land in Detroit, which picks No. 2, when the draft gets underway April 28.