Continuing the interior defensive lineman from yesterday, today we start with Kyrhi Thornton, out of Southern Mississippi. He's not a big name, but Thornton is a powerful, versatile defender that just proves the great depth and value that's in the 2014 NFL Draft.
Thornton weighed in at the combine at 304 pounds, so the thought right away is "he's too small to play nose tackle." At Southern Mississippi, he played quite a bit of "0 technique", where he was lined up directly over the center, and was very effective in doing so.
Traits That Stand Out
- Very Quick Off the Snap
- Strong Hands/Upper Body Strength
- Lives in Opponents Backfield
I think it's important for whichever defensive lineman San Diego does go with, that he's able to play multiple positions. This is something Thornton brings to the table. He can certainly hold up at the point of attack at nose tackle, something he showed. Despite being "only" 304 pounds, Thornton has that kind of raw power you want in an interior defensive lineman.
Though he played in the Sun Belt conference, Thornton was at his best against the highest competition. Arkansas's center Travis Swanson is viewed as top 5 at his position, and he owned him that day they squared off. His quickness and power really were apparent in against Arkansas.
Thornton certainly has a skill set that you can mold into a solid starter at the next level. Raw strength, good 1st step, powerful hands, and moves well.
Where He Needs to Improve
- Finishing Plays
- Shedding Blocks
|Multiple Pro Bowl Player, Top 10||8.5 – 9.0|
|Highly Productive Starter, 1st Round||8.0 – 8.4|
|Very Good Starter, Early 2nd Round||7.8 – 7.9|
|Reliable Starter, 2nd Round||7.5 – 7.7|
|Potential Starter in Year 2, 3rd Round||7.0 – 7.4|
|Backup/Spot Starter, 4th Round||6.5 – 6.9|
|Productive Backup, 5th Round||6.0 – 6.4|
|Very Good Backup/STs, 6th Round||5.5 – 5.9|
|Quality Backup/Good STs, 7th Round||5.0 – 5.4|
|Backup/STs/Project Player, 7th Round||4.5 – 4.9|
|Priority Free Agent w/ Limitations||4.0 – 4.4|
|Read & React||2||1|