New York Giants 5th overall pick Kayvon Thibodeaux has been in the spotlight since his high school days. After dominating at the collegiate level during his freshman season back in 2019, Thibodeaux failed to take significant steps forward but still featured as one of the best pass rushers in the entire 2022 draft class.
At 6’4″ and 256 pounds, the outside linebacker will fit Wink Martindale’s system to perfection, offering strength and speed off the edge. With a phenomenal first step, opposing offensive linemen are always at a disadvantage, especially in 1v1 situations. Heavy-footed tackles will have a tough time securing the edge with his speed, but he easily transitions to power. Give Kayvon an NFL diet and workout plan, and we may see him blossom into an even more dominant athlete.
Thibodeaux spoke to Steve Serby of the New York Post, noting his style of play and how important the fourth quarter is.
Relentless … poise … strategic.
I just want them to know that I’m gonna play until the last … until the lady sings. I’m gonna play until the game’s over. And when the fourth quarter comes, and the game’s on the line, I’m gonna leave it all out there.
Good pash rushers set up moves for later on in the game, specifically in the fourth quarter when it’s crunch time. Disappearing when it matters most is what separates good from great. Thibodeaux is confident he will help the Giants win games with his relentless effort and skillset.
That speaks more to the fourth quarter. Because the game is about longevity, you gotta do certain moves and do certain things to set up other things for later in the game. … Trying to be a master of situations. … Fourth quarter is where in college I use to really put the moves together.
Last season, Kayvon produced 7.0 sacks, 49 tackles, and 12 tackles for a loss for Oregon. Most of his negative traits are simply technique and vision-based, all coachable issues at the next level.
The Giants hired former Minnesota Vikings defensive line coach Andre Patterson, who is considered one of the best in the NFL. He is directly responsible for the development of Everson Griffen and Danielle Hunter, meaning he has a great sample size of coaching great players, which should directly impact Thibodeaux and Azeez Ojulari.
The Giants now have a solid young duo of pass rushers on rookie contracts, opening up finances for other positions. Joe Schoen has about $80 million at his disposal next season after declining the 5th year option of Daniel Jones. With two offensive tackles and pass rushers “cost-controlled,” Schoen can start to get creative with the building of the roster.