HEIGHT: 6'2 ½"
—He has elite foot speed, to the point where he should alter a game plan if left unblocked on the backside of runs because of his chase-down ability.
—Bases his pass rushes out of an NFL-caliber dip and rip move.
—Has the athleticism to gain contain on quarterbacks from inside stunts.
—Can quickly gain half-man leverage to either side of an offensive lineman in one clean step.
—Played in a man-heavy defensive structure that featured him in multiple positions on both the edge and interior.
—Runs hot and plays with a high level of effort consistently.
—For a defensive end prospect of his size, he struggled with getting knocked back at the point of attack.
—Despite his great feet, his technique to physically get off blocks needs work as a run defender when he cannot simply bend, lean and run into his fit.
—He may not be able to play in the same interior roles in the NFL as he did at the college level.
—Does not transition speed to power in ways one would expect for a player of his size with his foot speed.
16 tackles, 4 tackles for loss, 2 sacks
—At 6'2 1/2" and 261 pounds, Paye's reported 4.57-second 40-yard dash time and 6.37-second three-cone time would rank among the NFL's elite edge-rushers.
—Has missed games because of several injuries before, including multiple games in 2020 because of a groin injury.
No edge defender in this draft class has the upside of Kwity Paye, who could walk into most NFL buildings right now and be the most athletic pass-rusher. The other side of the coin with Paye is that his physicality and refined technique are not up to expectations of a 6'4", 277-pound defensive end prospect.
He will need to develop as a better run defender, but he has the potential to become an edge defender with a Cameron Wake-type resume, boasted by sack numbers even if his tackles for loss are well below the mark set by other pass-rushing peers.
GRADE: 8.2/10 (Round 1)
OVERALL RANK: 22/300
POSITION RANK: EDGE1
PRO COMPARISON: Cameron Wake
Written by B/R NFL Scout Justis Mosqueda