LEXINGTON, Ky. (FOX 56) – At Kentucky’s Pro Day earlier in April, former offensive lineman Darian Kinnard talked about how extensive the NFL Draft process had been. With workouts, the NFL Combine, Pro Day and more, it’s been busy since the Citrus Bowl win on New Year’s Day.
“These past two to three months have been consistently going running around doing stuff to make yourself better and present yourself to these teams so the biggest thing that I wasn’t prepared for was how long the process is and how much it drains you as a player but I’ve been enjoying it all together,” Kinnard said.
The Knoxville-native proved to be as steady as they come on Kentucky’s Big Blue Wall, playing offensive tackle for four years. He started two of the final three games of his freshman year at left tackle and moved to right tackle in 37 more games for the Wildcats.
He won the SEC Jacobs Blocking Trophy as the conference’s top offensive lineman and also took first-team AP All-American honors in 2021. He also was a third-team AP All-American and second team All-SEC selection in 2020 but wanted to come back for his senior season and thrived in Lexington.
Losing weight was a goal of his and he accomplished that after the season, losing 20 pounds before the NFL Combine where he weighed in at 322 pounds, coming in at 6’5″ and running a 5.31-second 40-yard dash.
Most NFL mock drafts have Kinnard going in the 2nd round, including the latest from CBS Sports which has him coming off the board at No. 48 overall to Chicago. He spoke about how NFL teams are interested in moving him inside to offensive guard, and said he prefers tackle but will do what it takes to win and what his new team needs.