Big Kat Byant Scouting Report: Big Kat Bryant NFL Draft Profile


Defensive End, UCF Knights, # 1



6′ 5″ / 245 lbs


Big Kat Bryant Draft Profile

Markaviest “Big Kat” Bryant played high school football at Crisp County High School in Georgia, where he also played basketball and track. Markaviest was rated a three-star recruit by Rivals and a four-star by 247 coming out of high school. Bryant was award the Georgia Class 3A defensive player of the year award. On top of that he was an ALL-State selection his senior season. This was after totaling 102 tackles, 36.5 tackles for loss, and 15.5 sacks during the season. Big Kat would then play four seasons at Auburn University. He moved on to the UCF Knights this season as a graduate transfer. During his time at Auburn, Markaviest would earn a SEC All-Freshman Team selection and a 2nd team All-SEC selection in 2020. Can he add to his impressive resume this season?


Markaviest Bryant Strengths


Reading the Play


Big Kat Bryant at Auburn

Big Kat Bryant at Auburn.

This might have been my favorite thing while watching film for my Big Kat Bryant scouting report. Bryant was so good at breaking down what was happening during a play, and then making adjustments accordingly. I never saw him get sucked in on read options, and he read who actually had the ball well too. But it wasn’t just on read option plays. Markaviest showed great ability to diagnose play action fakes, screen plays, and even blockers trying to sneak out for routes. Not only could Bryant figure out what the offense was trying to do, but would make adjustments on the fly in order to disrupt the play the best he could.

My favorite play was against Boise St. early this season. He recognized the read option, stopped off the line, read the quarterback had the ball, while pressuring noticed the running back trying to sneak out the backfield, hit the back to disrupt the pattern, and then still pressured the quarterback into throwing the ball away. He definitely shows the experience that you’d expect from a fifth year player.


Quick Off of the Ball

If there was one thing I was looking for when I scouted Thomas Booker, it was someone that was quick at the snap. While I ended up ultimately disappointed with Booker, I cannot say the same for Bryant. Not only was he typically one of the first players to move, he showed great anticipation for the snap count as well. With that being said, I would have loved to see it result in more stops for Markaviest. However, Bryant’s anticipation allowed him to blow a play up plenty of times. While these plays aren’t recorded on a stat sheet, anyone watching the film can appreciate what the Big Kat brings.



Bryant’s discipline ties into his ability to read the play as well as he does. Because Markaviest is able to decipher a play so quickly, you never really see him get fooled into being out of position. He always managed to hold his ground on read options and trusted his teammates to make the play. You could see that Bryant clearly understood what his job was within the defense on every play. Then he simply went out and did what was expected of him. Even during run support, you would see him hold his ground and clog up space on the outside in order to force the runner inside. Once the runner made their cut, Big Kat would shed the blocker and start his pursuit.


Strong vs. the Run

I was quite impressed with how well Bryant held up in his run defense. He is a slimmer build than your typical defensive end. Because of this I thought he would struggle against the run. Instead, I found the Markaviest did a fantastic job of being able to hold his ground and take up space. He did this by using his long arms to out leverage the opposing blocker. Then, because of his height, he was able to read the ball carrier’s location and make a play. Bryant even showed good ability to bring down the runner while still engaged with the blocker.


Markaviest Bryant Weaknesses


Lack of Productivity in Pass Rush

For everything that I like about Bryant, this is the main point that keeps me from putting a first round grade on him. At the time of this writing, Markaviest has played in 36 games. During that time he’s only been able to collect a grand total of 10 sacks. That’s almost one sack for every four games played. As pass happy as the NFL is these days, you can’t have a first round pick putting up those types of numbers. When watching the tape, you see a player that can’t cause havoc on opposing offenses. I saw Bryant burn tackles off the snap and blow plays up. There are times that he will anticipate the snap, take a step, cross the lineman’s face, and get into the backfield untouched. But sadly, those plays aren’t the norm.


A Bit Undersized

I don’t know if I would call this a weakness, as much as something I’d keep in the back of my mind. When looking at other defensive ends across the NFL, Bryant is a little undersized for a defensive end. At the same time he’s a similar size to Las Vegas Raiders’ Yannick Ngakoue and Cleveland Browns’ Jadeveon Clowney. So there are models of success already in the league which eases the concern. But after seeing him struggle at times getting off of collegiate blockers, it’s still a concern for me when he goes against NFL caliber lineman.


Final Thoughts on Big Kat Bryant


UCF DE Big Kat Bryant Scouting Report

UCF Defensive End Big Kat Bryant.

Big Kat is a player I like a lot. While I love the talent that he has, the few negatives I see are enough to keep me from placing a first round label on him. I mentioned earlier that he’s a similar size to that of former #1 overall pick Jadeveon Clowney, and I think that he is a good NFL comparison for Markaviest. Not what Clowney was projected to be coming out of college, instead what he’s been during his time in the NFL.

That being someone that is extremely stout against the run, while being serviceable with his pass rushing ability. All in all, I’m a little surprised that I haven’t seen Bryant listed more in Top 50 rankings so far. While I can’t give him that first round label that I so desperately wanted to while watching film, I do think that he’s a solid day 2 pick in the 2022 NFL Draft. I would feel comfortable taking him late in the 2nd round, and believe he will hear his name called before the end of the 3rd.

Big Kat Bryant Scouting Report / Prospect Report by Brandon Claburn

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