The 2022 NFL Draft will include some intriguing prospects, but these three players have ‘boom-or-bust’ written all over them.
With all the talent on display for the 2022 NFL Draft, NFL evaluators must weigh the pros and cons, and the upside/downside of each NFL hopeful. Some prospects are considered “clean” with little to no question marks, while others have a treasure chest full of red flags. Some red flags may be easier to live with and could pay big dividends down the road.
Those risky prospects can affectionately be termed the “boom or bust” players in this NFL Draft cycle. Below, I take a look at three of the more talented and polarizing players expected to go in the first round this month.
Each of these players could easily become top-5 players at their position, or phase themselves out of the NFL in a few years. Take a look and decide which players will boom and which players will bust as professionals at the next level.
2022 NFL Draft boom-or-bust prospects:
1. Kayvon Thibodeaux, EDGE, Oregon
Oregon’s Kayvon Thibodeaux is one of the bigger wildcards of the 2022 NFL Draft. The uber-talented EDGE rusher was widely viewed as the top prospect coming into the 2021 college season. However, due to inconsistent play and injuries, there are more questions than answers surrounding the former Duck. Once a ballyhooed five-star recruit in the 2019 high school recruiting cycle, Thibodeaux now looks ticketed for a top-10 selection.
There remains a possibility that Thibodeaux hears his name called first among NFL Draft prospects, but that is far from a lock at this point. After an up-and-down collegiate season, Thibodeaux backed out of position drills at the combine. This seemed to further concerns of NFL evaluators about his commitment and focus on becoming a success at the next level. Despite the missed games and lack of play-to-play consistency, Thibodeaux remains an elite prospect with an All-Pro ceiling.
He possesses great size, length, and explosion from the initial snap. With his skill set, he is also versatile and has the potential to play in multiple defensive schemes. During the combine, he was compared to another former Pac-12 great Willie McGinest.
With a little added strength and better discipline, that comparison could hold up and make Thibodeaux a terror in the NFL for a long time. There’s a wide range of outcomes for Thibodeaux’s NFL career, which makes him a prime candidate for the biggest boom/bust player in the entire 2022 NFL Draft.