Despite almost slipping out of the first round, the Purdue product was in attendance at the NFL draft. Upon taking the stage, he told the Las Vegas audience: “I’m ready to go win some Super Bowls.”
That surely left a tremendous first impression for fans, but it wasn’t his only message to Chiefs Kingdom.
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Karlaftis: ‘Let’s Get to Work, Let’s Win’
The Chiefs official Twitter account posted a video message from Karlaftis just after 11 p.m. CST.
The new pass rusher stated: “Hey Chiefs Kingdom, this is George Karlaftis I’m excited to be part of the family, let’s get to work, let’s win.”
A simple statement, but one that describes the Greek native to a T — he’s a worker with a tremendous motor. You know you’ll always get 100% effort from Karlaftis on and off the field, and that’s exactly what general manager Brett Veach and head coach Andy Reid were looking for.
After a charity event on April 27, in Vegas, the pass rusher spoke on the potential of the Chiefs drafting him — via Mick Shaffer. “We had some pretty good conversations,” Karlaftis told reporters. “Really positive, they really like me, obviously I really like them — great team, great organization — just gotta see how things shake out in the draft.”
He added that it would be “incredible” to be selected by Kansas City, explaining: “Chiefs don’t play from behind too much so that’d be awesome to get to rush the passer.”
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Karlaftis Could Be the Steal of Round 1
A few months ago, some analysts were mocking Karlaftis in the top five picks, or at least the top 10. So you could definitely say that the Chiefs were fortunate to see him fall to No. 30.
The defensive end is considered a bit raw to some but he’s known for his tireless ability as a power rusher off the edge. Karlaftis only finished with 4.5 sacks last year but Pro Football Focus Draft noted that his 90.6 pass-rush grade in 2021 was the highest by a Purdue player since 2014.
Plain and simple, he’s a disruptor, and he should do more damage with fewer double-teams next to Chris Jones and Frank Clark. NFL analyst Chris Simms called the Chiefs D-line “scary” after this addition.
He scouted Karlaftis: “Stout at the point of attack, and great at throwing blockers off him. I don’t think he’ll ever lead the league in sacks, but he will be a strong edge presence.”
That lack of production in college caused the Boilermaker to drop to KC, but the sky’s the limit for the 21-year-old prospect. If you think Karlaftis doubts his ability to succeed at the NFL level, just check his Twitter bio. It reads: “Prove em wrong.”