Route-Running - Shocking polish as a route runner despite limited usage and experience. Snaps his hips back to the ball out of breaks and shows terrific footwork to open quickly to the quarterback without delayed gear-downs. Route tree is decently limited due to the offense, but you still see flashes of more complex patterns like post-corners and vertical routes.
Ball Skills - Mixed bag in this area, making some terrific high-point snags but also dropping a few passes he should have had. Has the athleticism and natural hands to adjust and pluck outside his frame, including digging out low throws or skying for high ones. Basketball background shows up in some jump ball situations.
Speed - I think he's fast, although his speed has gotten very little publicity so far. Starts quick and can get on top of defenders in a hurry. Long speed to stretch the field as a vertical receiver, got behind man coverage several times on tape. Won't surprise me if he runs in the 4.6s.
Run Blocking - Highly competitive run blocker who has worked his tail off to get better at an area of weakness. Gets hands inside, sinks his hips and keeps a wide base to seal off defenders on inside runs. Good overall strength, but certain matchups against better competition could overwhelm him.
Contested Catch - Has a couple awesome contested grabs, showing leaping ability, length and box-out ability at the catch point. Elevation is easy and massive frame provides a natural shield for the ball. Hangs onto tough ones through contact. Not enough on tape example to bank on it being an elite trait, but everything we've seen suggested this could be a real area of strength for Warring.
YAC - Not given a lot of opportunities to make plays after the catch, and wasn't creative or elusive when he did have chances. Good strength to fight off tackler or at least finish forward. Long speed and vision to be a factor in the open field when he is given space.
Separation Quickness - Maintains quickness out of his breaks and doesn't have to gear down hard to make clean cuts. Calling him explosive might be a stretch, but he's quick with sudden hands to clear press coverage and get a step on defenders in a hurry. Love his physicality and awareness to fight through jams at the line of scrimmage and the top of the route to maximize throwing window.
Pass Protection - Barely utilized in this role in the games I studied, but has the patient hands, length and enough strength to be solid in this area.
Competitive Toughness - One of the first things you look for from a convert to a relatively new sport (Warring played just one year of football before college) who has spent limited time on the field is how physical they are. Warring isn't nasty in his play demeanor, but he competes at a high level, takes blocking seriously and won't be punked by aggressive defenders. Work ethic and character are heralded at SDSU.
Athleticism/Size - Long, lean, rocked-up frame with ideal length and size for the position. Will probably have one of the best bodies of any tight end in the league from day 1. Very good athlete who could bump himself into the top 100 with a big Combine.
BEST TRAIT – Athleticism/Size
WORST TRAIT – Route Running
RED FLAGS – Missed final 10 games of 2016 season with a foot injury.
One of the biggest "'arrow pointing up" prospects in the class, San Diego State's run-heavy offense utilized Kahale Warring sparingly, but when he did get opportunities, the former water polo and basketball standout was highly impressive.
Warring has the quickness and speed of a big wide receiver, but the length of a tight end and the biceps of a greek god. His routes and releases are already surprisingly polished, and while he can improve a bit as a blocker and continue to sharpen his ball skills, the work ethic and football character attributed to him at San Diego State bodes well for him reaching his high ceiling. Time this man gets the love he deserves as a top 100 prospect.
Round Grade: Late 2nd