Kalia Davis

  • IDL Knights
  • Senior
  • #--
  • 6'2"
  • 310lbs
  • Prospect
  • American Athletic

Prospect Summary

A high school linebacker, Davis originally played linebacker at UCF before making the transition to the defensive line in 2019. He is a penetration-style three-technique that thrives at shooting gaps and using his quickness. He has surprising firmness in his hands and ability to play with extension while anchoring against the run. With that said, he does need to continue developing his frame and getting stronger to hold up in the trenches at the next level. As it stands, he has a squatty and soft build that needs developed. He has likable qualities as a pass rusher but does need to develop his rush plan and counters to be more consistent and play with intentional hands that are not just “busy”. Davis has the makings of a quality rotational player in an even front defense. 

Ideal Role: Developmental three-technique 

Scheme Fit: Even front


Written by Joe Marino 

Games watched: Boise State (2021), Louisville (2021), East Carolina (2021)

Best Game Studied: Boise State (2021)

Worst Game Studied: Louisville (2021)

First Step Explosiveness: Davis is quick off the ball which is the foundation of his game given his role as a penetration-style player. He is sudden off the snap and rapidly shoots into gaps. His ability to be first is critical for how he wins. 

Flexibility: A converted linebacker, Davis is loose and springy. His ability to work back across his frame/momentum reveals his ability to disassociate his upper and lower half. He has excellent lateral range. 

Hand Counters: Davis’ plays with active hands but he has to develop more in how he deploys them. He can be more consistent with how he uses his hands to complement his footwork to soften angles and power through gaps. His hands stay busy but his minimal time on task at the position shows up with his erratic technique.  

Hand Power: Davis has a surprising amount of pop in his hands to get them located on opponents and use the to control at the point of attack. His hands aren’t easily swiped and he has sound extension skills. There is a noticeable stun when he lands his strikes on opponents.  

Run Defending: Davis holds his own as a run defender and finds success shooting gaps and anchoring at the point of attack. His background as a linebacker shows up with how processes and responds to blocks. He needs to continue developing his frame and adding functional strength to hold up as a run defender at the next level. 

Effort: Davis plays hard from snap to whistle. He is an urgent player in pursuit and routinely chases from distance. I like his ability to work laterally and string out runs. He never stops bringing it as a pass rusher, searching for counters to get home. 

Football IQ: Davis has a strong feel for processing inside run given his experience at linebacker and it shows on tape. He can develop more consistency reading the set of blockers and executing his rush plan from there. He does have plenty of room for technical growth given his newness to the position.

Lateral Mobility: Davis is springy working down the line of scrimmage and he has excellent range as a run defender. He can redirect rapidly and has good pursuit speed and urgency. 

Core/Functional Strength: Davis is reliant on his hand power, length and upper body strength to anchor against the run and will need to develop more core strength to hold up in the NFL. A big part of his development and acclimation to the next level is developing his frame and adding more functional strength. 

Versatility: Davis profiles as a penetration-style three-technique with little appeal in other roles. He is not an ideal a-gap defender. He may have some situational upside as a 4i but at his core, he’s a single-gap defender. 


TDN Consensus: 69.00/100 (Sixth Round Value)

Crabbs Grade: 67.00/100

Marino Grade: 71.00/100