George Karlaftis: NFL Draft Odds, Pick Projection, Stats & Highlights

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(AP Photo/Michael Conroy)
Colton Pool @CPoolReporter Apr 04, 2022, 9:17 AM

George Karlaftis needed all of two seconds to reach the passer.

The Purdue defensive end was facing Iowa last season. His power alone was clear. It’s a trait that’s led him to NFL Draft first-round consideration.

He used a rip move, flying past right tackle Nick DeJong around the edge. Almost instantly, Karlaftis had reached quarterback Spencer Petras.

It was only one instance of Karlaftis using his physical abilities to succeed. If he can expand his skill set, he will be an asset to NFL teams.

George Karlaftis Draft Odds

Karlaftis’ NFL Draft odds to be selected second overall are +20000 and his third-overall odds are +10000.

Michigan defensive end Aidan Hutchinson has the leading NFL Draft betting odds to be picked first at -250 as of April 1.

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

George Karlaftis Draft Pick Projection

The Arizona Cardinals need to replenish their pass rush and improve other areas of their defense. Adding Karlaftis would help them do so.

The Cardinals were in the top six in total, pass and rush DVOA a year ago, according to Football Outsiders. Pro Football Focus graded their pass rush ninth.

However, this was before they lost Chandler Jones in free agency. They now have a glaring hole up front opposite JJ Watt.

If they don’t want to drop off on that side of the ball, the Cardinals should add Karlaftis if he’s available when they are on the clock.

George Karlaftis’ Stats

When he was healthy in 2021, Karlaftis displayed what he was capable of. He was an All-American, All-Big Ten first-team honoree and a finalist for the Ted Hendricks Award, which goes to the country’s standout defensive end.

He totaled 41 tackles, 11.5 tackles for loss, with three forced fumbles and two fumble recoveries. He also disrupted quarterbacks with five sacks, eight hurries and two pass breakups.

The year before, he was an all-conference second-teamer despite playing in just three games due to injury and COVID-19. But he led Purdue with two sacks and added four tackles.

He was also an all-conference second-team member in 2019. Starting 12 games, he was third among his teammates with 54 tackles, 30 of which were solo.

A Freshman All-American that season, he paced the Boilermakers with 17 tackles for loss and tied for first with 7.5 sacks. He also broke up two passes and intercepted one to go along with two fumble recoveries and a forced fumble. 

George Karlaftis Draft Profile

The strength of Karlaftis jumps out immediately on his tape.

He knows how to win with leverage. However, his sheer power was often enough to win one-on-one matchups.

He bench pressed 225 points 21 times at the NFL Combine. He tied for second among defensive ends with a 38-inch vertical. He also had a 20-yard shuttle of 4.36 seconds and a broad jump of 10 feet, 1 inch.

In essence, Karlaftis is explosive.

In that Iowa game, Karlaftis began a play with his hand in the dirt. He’s willing to play down in a three-point stance or commence plays standing up.

As soon as he engaged left tackle Mason Richman, Karlaftis swiped his hands away. He barreled toward Petras and hit him while he released his pass, forcing an incompletion.

Karlaftis’ stiffness, though, may lead to him dropping down to the second half of the first round. His pass rush moves aren’t fluid, especially if he tries to counter after his initial action doesn’t work.

This is also problematic in the run game. If he’s blocked, he has a tough time tracking the ball and changing direction quickly enough. He also missed tackles occasionally.

But he’s opportunistic. 

When a pass is deflected, he’ll grab it. If a pass is within reach, he’ll deflect it. When opponents fumble, he recovers it.

In a matchup with Illinois on third-and-10, Karlaftis started in a three-point stance but remained low after the snap. With this advantage, he overwhelmed the left tackle and pushed him into the backfield. He then swatted the ball out of the quarterback’s hands for a strip-sack.

If Karlaftis can fine-tune some details, he will be a formidable professional.

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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.