With the NFL Combine right around the corner, GPN begins a new series outlining some of the college players that may be available when Green Bay picks at number 30. This list will then help us focus on the Combine results of those same players as we continue to anticipate the Packers’ young additions for the upcoming season.
Benardrick McKinney is another player that could make an immediate impact on the Green Bay Packers if he is available at pick number 30. Though many expect McKinney to be taken in the middle of the first round, we learned last year that the only certainty in the draft is uncertainty. How many draftniks last season had Ha Ha Clinton-Dix off the board before the Packers picked? Well I, for one, am glad they were wrong!
McKinney, inside linebacker out of Mississippi State is a tall linebacker at 6’5 and 249 pounds. If he can put on a little more weight without sacrificing speed, he could be a bruiser inside. Right now his weight is similar to Denzel Perryman but he is a full 5 inches taller! Of course, this is the listed height, we will see at the Combine what his official height comes out to be.
But McKinney is well build with a strong lower body. Strength and length are a great combination for a guy who would have to play inside and beat linemen to the spot to fill gaps. He has good speed (again we will keep an eye on him at the Combine) and is a sure tackler which is something the Packers really need inside. Green Bay doesn’t need just a sure tackler but somebody who drives through at the point of attack and delivers a blow.
This guy is tall…and tall can equate to “top-heavy” this seems to be the case with Benardrick. The importance of agility and footwork cannot be overstated when it comes to a linebacker who will be playing inside where there is a lot of confusion and mayhem. McKinney is so long that his footwork may become a liability. That liability also becomes a detriment in pass coverage and McKinney is a bit stiff in space.
Highlights (source Harris Highlights)
So all in all, Benardrick McKinney would be an asset if chosen at pick 30 and given time with the Packers coaching and training staff to develop. Just one addition to the ILB position that is an upgrade could make a dramatic difference to this year’s defense. Benardrick McKinney…definitely someone to keep an eye on in this year’s NFL Combine.