In Week 10 against the New Orleans Saints, 49ers rookie defensive tackle Javon Kinlaw recorded his first career sack. In Week 12 against the L.A. Rams, he upped the ante with an even bigger play — a big man touchdown.
San Francisco opened the second half with a 7-3 lead over the Rams, but Los Angeles had the ball. On the second play, at their own 27-yard line, quarterback Jared Goff found himself under intense pressure, and he got hit as he threw the ball. The pass flew forward wildly and Kinlaw got his hands on it, securing his first career interception.
But that wasn’t all. Kinlaw was wide open, all 319 pounds of him, and with nobody to stop him he took off to gain some yardage. Intended receiver Cooper Kupp had a chance to take him down, but Emmanuel Moseley provided a brilliant block along the sideline to Kinlaw’s right to keep the lane clear and Kupp at bay. No other Rams got close, thanks in part to more clutch blocking by Kerry Hyder Jr, and Kinlaw leaped into the end zone with an emphatic dive that may have registered on the Richter scale.
Drafted in the first round this year with the No. 14 overall pick, Kinlaw has played every game this season and started most of them. This was his biggest highlight yet, and also a major career milestone as his first NFL interception, pick-six, and touchdown of any kind. In fact, the big man never achieved any of those feats even once in three colleges seasons for South Carolina.