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Chiefs Sign Speedy Former Cowboys DE To Contract

On Tuesday, the Chiefs announced the signing of a former Hard Knocks standout in the shape of a former Cowboys’ defensive end. Where does the raw edge rusher fit in for Kansas City?

On Tuesday, the Kansas City Chiefs finally acquired more veteran depth at the defensive end position. The signing isn’t quite the same as trading for Robert Quinn or signing Ndamukong Suh, however, it should provide some much-needed depth to the team’s defensive line. Kamara does not have an NFL start thus far in his career and joins a roughly inexperienced unit that features George Karlaftis, Joshua Kaindoh, and Malik Herring. With the addition of Kamara, Frank Clark and Mike Danna remain the lone veteran options along the defensive line.

Former #Cowboys DE and "Hard Knocks" star Azur Kamara is signing with the #Chiefs, per source. — Tom Pelissero (@TomPelissero) July 26, 2022

Entering Training Camp, the Chiefs’ depth at the defensive end position remained among the team’s biggest question marks for next season. Despite being reported as one of the team’s biggest focuses this offseason, it seems that their work to improve that part of their defense has been lacking. Adding Kamara will help some, but is it enough?

New Chiefs Defensive End Adds Depth Despite Lack Of Experience

Azur Kamara started his college football career at Arizona Western College. In both seasons with the Matadors, Kamara played in the NJCAA National Championship. The team, unfortunately, lost both games. In his sophomore season (and final at AWC), Kamara posted 12.5 sacks and 15.5 tackles for loss in ten games played. Following the 2017 season, the college announced it would end its football program. Kamara was rated as a three-star Juco prospect before eventually committing to play football and the University of Kansas.

At Kansas, Kamara appeared in 19 games over two seasons for the Jayhawks. His best season would turn out to be his senior season. That season, in 2019, he played 12 games and logged 51 tackles, four sacks, and six and a half tackles for loss. According to Lance Zierlein at NFL Network, Kamara entered the NFL draft as an extremely raw prospect. He touched on Kamara some in an excerpt on his draft and combine profile:

“Kamara has just one season as a full-time starter at Kansas and, subsequently, one season of production. Hip tightness limits his rush flow and makes his attacks rigid and linear. He’s missing instincts and feel to be able to play freely and fast against the run at this time. Putting more functional mass on his frame will be critical, if he can carry it. He’s tremendously raw and unskilled as a rusher, which might work in his favor for teams looking for a long-limbed project to build from the ground up.” Lance Zierlein, NFL Network

Kamara went undrafted in the 2019 NFL Draft but would go on to sign an undrafted free agent contract with the Dallas Cowboys. He was a star in that season of Hard Knocks, becoming a fan favorite mostly due to his background and history of escaping the Civil War in the Ivory Coast. Kamara went on to make the Cowboys’ roster out of Preseason.

From civil war in the Ivory Coast to the @dallascowboys 53-man roster. Azur Kamara's story is what makes Hard Knocks so special. 🙏 (via @NFLFilms)#HardKnocks: airing now on @HBOMax — NFL (@NFL) September 8, 2021

He played just one season for the Cowboys, however, before he was eventually released in December 2021. He was claimed off waivers by the Panthers and remained on their roster until May 2022.

Although Kamara has played strictly as a special teamer to this point in his career, he’s still an incredibly raw talent on the defensive line and with proper coaching could become a very impactful depth piece for the defense. On the flip side, it’s possible that he remains nothing more than a special team role player. The Chiefs’ lack of depth, however, could give Kamara a larger chance to shine than he received at his past two stops.

Azur Kamara 🇨🇮 also got some minutes in for the @dallascowboys in their 3-point win against the @chargers! What an amazing round games! And still the Sunday and Monday Night Football action to follow..,#NFLAfrica — NFL Africa (@NFLAfrica) September 20, 2021

Kamara has blazing quickness and shows it in flashes. He was the 10th fastest linebacker at the 2019 NFL Combine when ranked by 40-yard dash time. The Chiefs are getting a raw, toolsy edge prospect and at just 23 years old, there’s plenty of development for potential here.

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What expectations do you have from new Chiefs’ DE Azur Kamara? Leave a comment down below to join the discussion.

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