Kayvon Thibodeaux: NFL Draft Odds, Pick Prediction, Stats & Highlights

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Oregon defensive end Kayvon Thibodeaux gestures during an NCAA college football game against Washington, Saturday, Nov. 6, 2021, in Seattle. Oregon won 26-16.
(AP Photo/Stephen Brashear)
Colton Pool @CPoolReporter Sep 07, 2022, 12:06 PM

Kayvon Thibodeaux was met by two blockers, and he needed as many seconds to take down the quarterback anyway.

This past season, Fresno State’s tackle and guard both tried to stop the Oregon edge rusher. But Thibodeaux, who’s in contention to be selected first overall in the NFL Draft, was too fast. He set up on the outside and drew the tackle that way, darted between his opponents, then forced a fumble that set the Ducks up within Fresno State’s 5-yard line.

“Game-wrecker” has been a term associated with Thibodeaux, and his tape backs it up.

Kayvon Thibodeaux Draft Odds

Thibodeaux has the fourth-best NFL Draft odds to be selected first overall at +1500.

Michigan defensive end Aidan Hutchinson has the leading NFL Draft betting odds to be picked first at -350 as of March 15.

NamePositionTeam1st Pick Odds (4/28)
Travon WalkerDLGeorgia-450
Ikem EkwonuOLNC State+400
Aidan HutchinsonDEMichigan+400
Evan NealOLAlabama+2000
Kayvon ThibodeauxDEOregon+3000
Desmond RidderQBCincinnati+3000
Malik WillisQBLiberty+5000
Charles CrossOLMississippi State+10000
Ahmad "Sauce" GardnerCBCincinnati+10000
Jordan DavisDTGeorgia+10000
Derek Stingley Jr.CBLSU+15000
Kyle HamiltonSNotre Dame+15000
Matt CorralQBOle Miss+15000
Sam HowellQBNorth Carolina+20000
Garrett WilsonWROhio State+20000
Tyler LinderbaumOLIowa+20000
Kenny PickettQBPitt+25000
DeMarvin LealDTTexas A&M+30000
Kaiir ElamCBFlorida+30000
Carson StrongQBNevada+30000
Treylon BurksWRArkansas+30000
Chris OlaveWROhio State+50000

The Jacksonville Jaguars have the No. 1 overall pick, and they have needs essentially everywhere except quarterback after selecting Trevor Lawrence a year ago.

Kayvon Thibodeaux Draft Pick Prediction

The Jaguars could use Thibodeaux’s skills, but they may be better suited drafting Neal. The Detroit Lions would then have a tough time passing up Hutchinson, a Heisman Trophy runner-up.

So the Houston Texans, at No. 3 overall, would be a solid landing spot for Thibodeaux. Houston ranked 23rd in defensive DVOA, 23rd in adjusted sack rate, and 25th in adjusted line yards on the ground last season, according to Football Outsiders. 

PFF ranked Houston 30th in overall defense, 26th in run defense, and 17th in pass rushing.

After promoting Lovie Smith from defensive coordinator to head coach this offseason, the Texans may be looking to bolster that side of the ball. With this being such a strong draft in terms of the offensive and defensive lines, Thibodeaux and his skill set would make sense here.

Kayvon Thibodeaux’s Stats

Thibodeaux is tied for seventh all-time at Oregon with 19 career sacks in 31 games. His 34.5 tackles for loss were fifth among Power Five players since the beginning of 2019.

Thibodeaux also shined on the biggest stages of his college career. He amassed 21 quarterback pressures, 13 tackles, 5.5 tackles for loss, and 4.5 sacks in three Pac-12 Championship games. 

Thibodeaux was ranked 12th among FBS pass rushers by PFF as a sophomore in 2021. He racked up seven sacks and 12 TFLs, both team highs, with 48 quarterback pressures and 28 hurries. That was despite missing three games.

In 2019, Thibodeaux broke the freshman record with a team-high nine sacks, leading the country with seven in the fourth quarter. He also led the team with 14 TFLs. Additionally, he set a conference championship game record with 2.5 sacks.

A year later, he started all seven of Oregon’s games and led the team in sacks (three) and TFLs (9.5) for a second straight season. According to PFF, he led the Pac-12 in QB pressures (34) and hurries (27), with 23 of those pressures being in the last three games and 12 being in the Pac-12 Championship.

Kayvon Thibodeaux’s Draft Profile

Thibodeaux’s most remarkable trait is his first step. Even in the NFL, few will easily keep up with him at the snap of the ball.

Against Cal in his final year of college, offensive lineman Will Craig needed to catch up to Thibodeaux even before the quarterback caught the ball. Thibodeaux ripped underneath, and even though Craig was called for holding, the Oregon star sacked the passer almost immediately anyway.

At 6-foot-5, 258 pounds, Thibodeaux has the length, speed, and an expansive arsenal of moves to put offensive lineman out of position in a hurry. Either they step out too wide in pass protection and Thibodeaux can cut inside, or he’s too fast and uses a Von Miller-esque bend to win around the edge.

In a game with Washington State, Thibodeaux stutter-stepped and forced offensive lineman Liam Ryan to the outside, in part because he’s so fast and demands that precaution. But this opened up a lane to the quarterback on the inside, and Thibodeaux took advantage.

Thibodeaux can also be explosive while defending the run. He can blow up trap blocks and long-arm offensive linemen in order to hold an edge. However, he can occasionally be too eager at the snap and be drawn offsides.

He also has the discipline to contain the edge, which led to him halting wide receiver perimeter runs his way. His speed allows him to keep up with skill players in confined spaces.

This past season in Oregon’s contest with Stanford, Thibodeaux was to be blocked by a guard and tackle. But he kept his arms extended and drove them back, showing his strength. He finished the play with a tackle near the line of scrimmage.

Thibodeaux’s range of comprehensive abilities would do well for a rebuilding Texans defense.

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About the Author

Colton Pool

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Colton Pool is a Web Content Writer for BetMGM living in Bozeman, Montana, focusing on the NFL and NBA. Previously, he covered Montana State football at the Bozeman Daily Chronicle and worked at newspapers in his home state of North Dakota. He graduated from North Dakota State in 2015.

Colton Pool is a Web Content Writer for BetMGM living in Bozeman, Montana, focusing on the NFL and NBA. Previously, he covered Montana State football at the Bozeman Daily Chronicle and worked at newspapers in his home state of North Dakota. He graduated from North Dakota State in 2015.