3 Miami football players named 2024 NFL Draft under performing prospects

Three Miami football players were named by Jim Wyman of Pro Football Focus among the "2024 NFL Draft: Top prospects who underperformed in 2023."

Oct 15, 2022; Blacksburg, Virginia, USA;  Miami Hurricanes defensive lineman Leonard Taylor (56)
Oct 15, 2022; Blacksburg, Virginia, USA; Miami Hurricanes defensive lineman Leonard Taylor (56) / Reinhold Matay-USA TODAY Sports
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Defensive tackle Leonard Taylor, offensive lineman Javion Cohen and safety Kamren Kinchens were Miami football players named by Jim Wyman of Pro Football Focus among the "2024 NFL Draft: Top prospects who underperformed in 2023."

Taylor regressed significantly in 2024. After 45 tackles, 19 tackles for loss, five sacks, an interception and pass defended combined as a true freshman and sophomore in 2021 and 2022, Taylor had 19 tackles, 3.5 sacks and 1.0 sacks as a junior in 2023. Taylor's NFL Draft projections have plummeted.

Taylor was projected as the 11th pick in the 2024 NFL Draft as recently as November 24, per the NFL Mock Draft Database. That was the day of the final regular season game versus Boston College. As of Thursday, Taylor is listed as the 100th overall prospect. A less-than-inspiring performance at the NFL Combine likely hurt Taylor.

Taylor was the 11th signee nationally, fourth DT and third prospect in Florida in the 2021 Class per the 247Sports composite rankings. Because of his underwhelming performance, Cody Nagel of 247Sports stated that Taylor was one of the losers among the front seven performers at the NFL Combine.

"DI LEONARD TAYLOR III, MIAMI (FL) (BIG BOARD RANK: 118)
Taylor is another player who garnered some preseason first-round hype but delivered a mixed bag in 2023. He had three games with a PFF grade over 87.0 but another three where he dipped below 60.0. Taylor’s strength is as a pass rusher, as he registered an 82.1 grade with 21 pressures while lining up primarily on the interior.

Against Bethune-Cookman, he recorded five pressures and two quarterback hits on only 11 pass-rush snaps. However, his tackling and run defense left a lot to be desired, as he earned a 64.4 run-defense grade and a poor 33.6 tackling grade, missing 27.8% of his tackle attempts.

Taylor still has a wide range of draft outcomes, with the potential to go anywhere from the second round to the middle of Day 3."

Jim Wyman, Pro Football Focus

A lot was expected from Kamren Kinchens in 2023 after being named a first-team All-American in 2022. Kinchens' grades from Pro Football Focus regressed significantly in 2023. Kinchens' overall stats were nearly the same in 2023 as in 2022, playing in two fewer games.

Kinchens had 59 tackles, 1.5 TFLs, one forced fumble, 12 passes defended and six interceptions, with one returned for a touchdown in 2022. Kinchens' 2022 numbers were 59 tackles, 2.5 TFLs, one sack, 10 passes defended, five interceptions and another TD in 2023.

"S KAMREN KINCHENS, MIAMI (FL) (BIG BOARD RANK: 84)
Kinchens was one of the best safeties in college football in 2022, putting up an elite 90.0 PFF overall grade and a 90.7 coverage grade after making six interceptions — three of which came in one game against Georgia Tech.

Heading into 2023, Kinchens was looking like the top safety in the draft and a projected first-round pick. While he didn’t play poorly, his 67.8 PFF overall grade and 65.1 coverage grade were a far cry from the heights he reached in 2022. Kinchens didn’t fare much better at the NFL scouting combine, as his 4.65 40-yard dash was tied with fellow Miami safety James Williams for the slowest mark at the position (though Williams is about 25 pounds heavier).

While Kinchens is still likely to be one of the first safeties off the board, it is unlikely we hear his name called on night one."

Jim Wyman, Pro Football Focus

Javion Cohen made an immediate impact for Miami on the interior of the offensive line. Cohen helped Miami improve significantly on offense even if his PFF grade did not completely reflect that. The ACC named Cohen honorable-mention All-Conference. Cohen's most memorable block was in overtime versus Virginia when Mark Fletcher score

"IOL JAVION COHEN, MIAMI (FL) (BIG BOARD RANK: 205)
The third Miami player to appear on this list (we swear, Hurricanes fans, we’re not doing this on purpose), Cohen was considered one of the top guard prospects heading into the season with the potential to find his way into first-round consideration with a big year.

A former two-year starter at Alabama, Cohen transferred to Miami ahead of the 2023 season looking to be a key cog in the Hurricanes’ offensive line. That didn’t quite happen, as Cohen put up just a 59.4 PFF grade, never going higher than 67.0 in any game. He did earn four 80.0-plus pass-blocking game grades, but he struggled mightily as a run blocker, grading out below 60.0 in eight of 12 outings."

Jim Wyman, Pro Football Focus

Next. How Miami football DT Leonard Taylor performed at NFL Combine. How DT Leonard Taylor performed at NFL Combine. dark

With Pro Day behind them, Cohen, Kinchens and Taylor will have to wait until April 25 through 27 to learn where they will be drafted. The first round takes place on the 25th, the second and third on the 26th and the fourth through seventh rounds on the 27th. All three will still likely be drafted despite their fall in the rankings.