Kyle Dugger 2020 NFL Draft Profile
2020 NFL Draft
Kyle Dugger is a safety out of Lenoir-Rhyne, and when the 2020 NFL Draft arrives, he’s set to be his school’s first drafted player in 20 years. Dugger has a wide-ranging skillset that includes playing as a defensive back and a punt return specialist, so he’ll get plenty of attention from NFL teams while they’re on the clock.
College Career: Dugger became a starter in Lenoir-Rhyne’s secondary as a corner during his redshirt freshman year, but then switched to safety in his sophomore season due to a meniscus injury.
Dugger really began to blossom during his junior season. He was named First Team All-South Atlantic Conference at both defensive back and return specialist, and was the first player in school history to have two games with two punt returns for touchdowns. Despite suffering a head injury during his senior year, Dugger won the Cliff Harris Award for the best small-school defensive player and participated in the 2020 Senior Bowl.
Strengths: Dugger played like a man among boys at Lenoir-Rhyne, dominating the competition and making enough noise to attract NFL scouts. He’s got a ton of intangible natural gifts: speed, size, technique and determination. Dugger displayed a great nose for the football, and took full advantage of mistakes made by the quarterbacks and receivers he faced.
Dugger’s angles look great, and he has great reaction time to hone in on passes. With a complex arsenal of tools, Dugger can go full force on a vicious hit or stand tall in preparation for a wrap-up tackle.
Weaknesses: The main thing working against Dugger going into this draft is that he’s spent his career facing sub-par competition. Even though he performed more than admirably during his college days, the NFL is going to serve as an enormous jump in talent and he’ll have to prove himself all over again at the professional level.
Dugger needs some fundamental training on his footwork and leverage, so he’ll need a gifted coaching staff to help him reach his full potential. He’s certainly a project, but by a visual test all the pieces are there.
Possible Fits: Dugger’s name will likely start popping up around the middle of the second round in the 2020 NFL Draft. Most mockups have a run on high-upside defensive players around that time; specifically edge rushers, linebackers and defensive backs. Dugger is certainly in that group.
The Broncos will be reloading and retooling on defense in this draft, and sitting at No. 46 overall they’re in a prime spot to pick up Dugger. He could serve as a replacement for the departed Will Parks—and possibly even be an upgrade if Dugger can fulfill his potential.
Later on in that second round—the last pick in the round, actually—at 64 are the Seahawks. Seattle would be a great place for Dugger to learn the professional game, and he could be a big lift to an already talented defense there.