Missouri defensive end Kony Ealy, one of the top NFL draft prospects among pass rushers, delivered two sacks Saturday in a win over Kentucky, giving the fourth-year junior 5.5 sacks on the year.
It was a dominant effort for the 6-foot-5, 275-pound defensive end, coming against a mobile quarterback in the Wildcats' Jalen Whitlow. The sack total was a career high for Ealy, as was his three tackles for loss. For the game, Ealy made six tackles, five of them solo, and accounted for 11 yards in losses.
During preseason practice, Ealy revealed that he had been given a third- to fourth-round draft grade by the NFL Draft Advisory Board in response to his application for feedback last winter when deciding whether to turn pro early. With 8.5 tackles for loss on the season, along with a whopping 13 quarterback hurries, Ealy has done nothing to suggest that feedback wasn't legitimate. A cousin of former Missouri star and New York Jets rookie Sheldon Richardson, Ealy may not make the decision to return to school yet again next year if his feedback from the board improves this winter.
Ealy projects best as a defensive end in a 4-3 scheme at the NFL level.