Just one day after being released by the Detriot Lions, linebacker Devon Kennard signed a 3-year $20 million contract with $12.25 million guaranteed. Originally a 2014 fifth-round selection of the Giants, the 6′-3″ 256 pounds Kennard is a versatile linebacker who can play edge or off-ball.
Kennard has started 65 games in 6 seasons in the league, including 30 the last two seasons in Detroit. While versatile, he doesn’t bring any high-level skills in any specific area, however his run defense has been consistently solid and his pass-rush has been improving in recent years.
Devon Kennard a solid addition
As the Cardinals look to improve their defense in free-agency and the draft, Kennard adds a good, solid, consistent, and versatile defender to the mix. Able to play edge, outside-linebacker, or inside-linebacker, he will see a lot of field time. He also has good coverage skills for a linebacker, playing over 100 coverage-snaps in all but one season and registering 2 pass break ups.
Devon Kennard has shown good improvement in the last few seasons as a pass-rusher, increasing his 14 total pressures in 2017 to 36 in 2018, and a career high 43 in 2019. With 14 sacks and 16 QB hits the last two seasons, Kennard has demonstrated consistent ability to get to the quarterback.
Kennard’s contract is structured in a way that allows the Cardinals to get out of the contract after just one season if things aren’t going as planned.