Film Study: Could Benardrick McKinney bring some punch to Green Bay Packers defense?

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Mississippi State Bulldogs linebacker Benardrick McKinney (50) tries to pump up the crowd noise against the Alabama Crimson Tide. John David Mercer-USA TODAY Sports

A couple of weeks ago I conducted an in-depth film study on inside linebacker prospect Stephone Anthony. We took a look at his game and broke down how he’d fit in the Green Bay Packers defense.

Today we do the same with another top inside linebacker prospect – Benardrick McKinney.

McKinney is a polarizing prospect going into the NFL Draft.

Some analysts, like‘s Bucky Brooks, love him and see him as a sure-fire first round pick, while others, like NFL Draft Scout’s Dane Bugler, don’t believe the former Mississippi State linebacker will go any earlier than the late second round.

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If you search mock drafts around the internet there isn’t a more popular choice for the Packers’ 30th overall pick than McKinney.

He seems to be a natural fit at a position that is undeniably the Packers greatest need going into this offseason.

At 6-foot-4, 245-pounds, McKinney is an intimidating presence manning the middle of the field and could be the physical run defender Green Bay has been missing at linebacker for several years now.

However, I wanted to take a closer look at McKinney’s game and really evaluate what he does well, what he struggles with, and analyze if he’d be a good fit for the Packers in the draft.

I also wanted to see if all of the hype was warranted and if his physical size and athletic ability translated well on the field.

For this study, I went back and watched several of McKinney’s games at Mississippi State, analyzing each snap.

The following is a breakdown of McKinney’s game with some clips (courtesy of to highlight what he brings to the field as one of the top inside linebacker prospects.

Next: Ability Against the Run