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  So many saw this opportunity for Javon Kinlaw, but he had to trust himself before it could become reality. It's here. Kinlaw was the 14th player selected in the first round of the NFL Draft on Thursday by the San Francisco 49ers, completing his journey from a homeless child on the streets of Washington, D.C., to a multi-millionaire professional football player. Kinlaw's contract will be finalized in the coming days, but last year's 14th pick, Atlanta Falcons guard Chris Lindstrom, signed a four-year, $14.6 million deal, including an $8.6 million signing bonus. Kinlaw also signed an endorsement deal with Gillette just before the draft.

The 6-6, 310-pound defensive lineman was once a teenager who took a Greyhound bus from Washington to Goose Creek, seeking a fresh start. He turned into an All-American at South Carolina, and an addition to an exclusive club. Kinlaw is the 14th first-round NFL Draft pick from USC in its history. He is the first since Hayden Hurst went to Baltimore with the 25th pick in 2018. "I think in life, sometimes a young man just needs an opportunity, just needs somebody to believe in him," USC coach Will Muschamp said of Kinlaw. "It's an unbelievable story, really, it is. That's a young man who's been put in some tough situations and continued to fight, to persevere. He's an example to us all." - Rock Hill Herald

Sr/2020 DT Javon KinlawSouth Carolina
News Source: Rock Hill Herald

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