Kyle is an excellent “in space” pass rusher. He has very quick feet and a
terrific burst to the ball. Kyle is moved all over the defense and at times is
used as a spy on the running quarterbacks because of his ability to hunt down
opponents and make plays in the open field. Kyle has good size to go along with
his excellent overall athletic talent. He has the unique ability to knock
blockers off balance with his speed. Once that happens, he takes advantage of
his opponent to make plays in the backfield with disruptive passion. He gives
you great effort on every play and is a leader through his play on the field.
His burst to the ball is one of the best in this draft and I’m sure his workout
numbers will stand out in this linebacker class. He is the type of defensive
player that can impact if used as a specialty pass rusher and in coverage in
nickel-dime packages for the team that drafts him.
Kyle misses tackles like a man keeps missing his proctologist exam. He lunges
and arm tackles – he doesn’t bring his feet and players are running through him
and breaking tackles like water through a sieve. He struggles now to bring down
quarterbacks for sacks and once again this will be magnified at the next level.
He is excellent playing in open space but once he is engaged, he struggles to
get off blocks and make plays. Kyle will make a lot of plays for you but leave
him on the field too long and he will give up as many big plays as he might make
due to his sloppy tackling.
There is a lot to like about Kyle’s game; however, as much as there is to like,
there are parts of his game that will make a near bald-headed coach pull out the
last remaining hairs on his head. Good coaches will leave him on the field in
passing situations or when Kyle’s team is ahead and the opponent is passing to
even the score. If you leave him on the field in a close game when your team
needs the ball back and the opponent is running the ball to take time off the
clock, all I can say is forgetaboutit…take him off the field. Kyle can be very
disruptive. He can make impact plays. I have seen him on the goal line and his
effort to disrupt blocking is impressive. I have seen him set up in the slot
looking like he is going to cover and then blitz into the back field and disrupt
a play or sack the quarterback. In space, Kyle is an impact player. On the line
against bigger offensive lineman he gives the effort and doesn’t give up, but
his techniques are not very impressive. Add to that his arm tackling and lunging
to tackle and you have a very talented outside linebacker who can play in any
style of defense, but must improve his tackling and shedding blockers to stay on
the field for every down. I like this kid’s potential but I’m not sure he will
ever be an every down linebacker for the next level. Kyle reminds me a lot of
the highly rated Barrett Ruud drafted in the 2nd round of the 2005 draft by
Tampa Bay Buccaneers. Barrett is a solid specialty linebacker who has played for
Buccaneers, Titians, Seahawks, Saints, and Texans. When Barrett came out he was
considered to be one of the best linebackers of that class by everyone but me.
Such is my life!