Like most of the Kansas City Chiefs draft picks I had no idea who the Chiefs were looking at so the second round selection of DE Tanoh Kpassagnon surprised me. I wasn’t very familiar with him but I’ve been catching up with some stories around the Internet.
I’ve collected a few stories from around the internet on the member of the d-line. The first thing I’m reading is that he looks the part.
There’s something about a beautiful body here. That kinda reminds me of Allen Bailey who looks (and plays) the part. It sounds like he would be a five tech in the Chiefs defense which is looking pretty young and talented right now.
Here are some more stories to read while we await round three:
Kpassagnon is a huge dude (6-7, 289) who has the look of a five-technique in 3-4. I was impressed by his athleticism and length. He explodes off the snap, he plays hard and was a team captain. I’m in.
The 22-year-old Kpassagnon is a brilliant young man.
Kpassagnon double majored in Finance and Accounting in Villanova’s School of Business.
According to the Villanovan’s Collin Linden, Kpassagnon took on an internship last summer that required him to wake up at 5:00 a.m. every day to work out with teammates before boarding a train to work an eight-hour day.
By the time he became a senior, the compliments built to a hyperbolic level. For Villanova’s game against Albany, the press box overflowed with 15 NFL scouts. Delaware coach Danny Rocco calls him a “game wrecker,” and Towson coach Rob Ambrose termed him a “game breaker.”
Regardless of how they quantify the carnage, there’s no downplaying his impact. Kpassagnon finished last season with 21.5 tackles for loss and 11 sacks, both of which placed him in the top 15 of the FCS standings. Ambrose summed up his prospects by saying, “there’s no hit or miss” with Kpassagno in the NFL: “At this level, yeah, he’s one of the best I’ve seen.”
Kpassagnon has a lot working in his favor as he embarks on a career in professional football. His tenure at Villanova started slowly — a redshirt year, inexperience, and injury limited him to just 27 tackles his first three seasons in Philadelphia — but laid the foundation for a breakout 2016. His expanding frame drew scouts’ attention, as did weigh-ins at the Senior Bowl, but it was his performance on the field that elevated him from late-round flier to second-round pickup.
The 6’7 end has the strength to utilize his leverage to the fullest, engaging blockers in with his long arms and tossing them aside when he sees an opening. He’s also fast enough to cut around the corner with a straight-up speed rush, making him a difficult lineman to game plan against. He can get into the pocket and bring down quarterbacks, but his jacked broomstick arms also give him the ability to knock down pass after pass at the line of scrimmage.
"First thing that jumps out is he's 6-7. He's 280 pounds, and he's cut out of rock," Eagles vice president of player personnel Joe Douglas said. "He's as body beautiful as it gets."
And it's not just size. The scouts that flocked to Villanova this year are also compelled by the talent that goes with the size. When Douglas went to see Kpasssagnon in person during the fall, Kpasssagnon sacked the quarterback twice in the first half. He finished the season with 11 sacks, showing the production that Douglas wants to see from small-school players.
“He’s got the measurables. It’s shocking he can move as fast as he moves as big as he is,” Bommarito said recently. “The one thing people weren’t ready for (at the Senior Bowl) is he passed every test. He passed the eye test. You just don’t see a guy who weighs 290 pounds with 3 percent body fat, and he can run, and he can jump.”
No question, Kpassagnon is a physical freak. Bommarito said he’s the most imposing defensive end he’s ever trained and his list includes New York Giants star Jason Pierre-Paul and Cincinnati Bengals Pro Bowler Carlos Dunlap.
While he has the length, size and athleticism that is the foundation of what teams look for along their defensive front, his issues with contact balance and body control might not be easily remedied. Kpassagnon lacks natural pass rush talent and may need to strengthen his lower body so he can lock in as a two-gapping, edge-setting base end who can reduce inside on rush downs.