The Denver Broncos ventured across the northern border to sign Jonathan Kongbo, a two-time CFL champion now seeking to make his mark in the NFL. A former Tennessee Volunteer, Kongbo has struggled with injuries in the past but is now healthy and ready to contribute to an NFL team.
Does he have a shot to make the roster?
#90 Jonathan Kongbo
Weight: 255 lbs
Experience: 1 year
How he fits with the Broncos in 2022
I’ll admit, this was the first time I’ve sat down to watch CFL film to scout someone. Kongbo wasn’t super productive, with just 17 tackles and three sacks in 2021. To build a better and more complete picture, I went back to his Tennessee film to scout some more and came away pretty impressed.
Kongbo’s frame is the first thing to jump out, as 6-foot-5, 255 pounds is hard to ignore on the field. It wasn’t hard to find him on the field, despite him lining up at different spots.
Tennessee threw him all around the field, playing him at LEO, OLB, DE, and even some reps over the center and in the slot. He showed easy, smooth athleticism on the field, and it was evident why Kongbo was the No. 1 JUCO product in the 2016 class (Garett Bolles was the No. 3 that year). Kongbo amassed 52 pressures with the Vols and even recorded two interceptions in his career.
Obviously, Kongbo won’t have the technical refinement of an elite NFL-caliber edge rusher, but he did flash a few nifty moves on some reps in the CFL, showing off a nice rip and spin move while working against mainly right tackles.
Kongbo’s run defense held up well too, and he did a solid job keeping guys out of his frame with his 34 and 3/8-inch arms. I didn’t see him get blasted out of the play all that often versus the run, something that the Broncos definitely didn’t have last season.
New Broncos reserve/futures pass rusher Jonathan Kongbo with a pick-six off of Drew Lock back in 2016 pic.twitter.com/Mnnf2k7g56— Sayre Bedinger (@SayreBedinger) January 12, 2022
I don’t believe it will surprise anyone if I say Kongbo is a long shot to make the roster. There are plenty of talented players ahead of him at the EDGE spot, and he has to prove he can win against NFL tackles and stay healthy.
He’ll be competing against Malik Reed, Jonathon Cooper, Christopher Allen, and Aaron Patrick for the last spots, and on just a futures contract, that doesn’t appear to be a likely battle for him to win.
However, there’s certainly an intriguing developmental path for him to be a contributor, and he has played special teams before. With the flashes I’ve seen from him, Kongbo would be a nice player to stash on the practice squad and see what he can develop into down the road.
How does Jonathan Kongbo fit onto this Broncos’ roster?
This poll is closed
Special teams; Depth at EDGE
Practice Squad player
Cut from final roster and PS