49ers camp prediction No. 1: Javon Kinlaw exceeds all expectations
Rookies always get a lot of hype during training camp, especially high-profile ones. And that won’t be different for the Niners’ top selection in this year’s NFL Draft, South Carolina defensive tackle Javon Kinlaw.
Kinlaw’s pass-rushing prowess at the collegiate level prompted his first-round selection, and San Francisco is expecting him to jump in and fill the void left by now-Indianapolis Colts defensive tackle DeForest Buckner.
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But there’s an easy argument to be had Kinlaw could be better than Buckner, even as soon as this year. Kinlaw, after all, is much more equipped to handle double teams than Buckner was, meaning the rookie’s impact could be much better felt early on than Buckner.
That’s a hope, nothing more right now. Yet Kinlaw certainly has his share of endorsements, including Dee Ford, who told the team’s website the following:
"He reminds me of Nick Bosa when he came in. He didn’t say too much. When you’re a first-round draft pick you can come in and… be a little entitled. That’s not him. That’s not in his DNA. [Javon’s] everything that you want to see in a rookie."
Hopefully, the training camp reports won’t have any difficulty singing Kinlaw’s praises, and he’ll do more than just live up to his early hype.