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Penn State CB Kalen King Looks Ahead to 2024 NFL Draft Prep at Senior Bowl

Photo by Matt Lynch, Nittany Sports Now: Kalen King

Penn State was well represented at the 2024 Reese’s Senior Bowl in Mobile, Alabama.

Tight end Theo Johnson, defensive lineman Adisa Isaac and defensive backs Johnny Dixon and Kalen King were all in attendance during Senior Bowl practice and Saturday’s game looking to boost their draft stock.

For King, a projected second-round pick in the 2024 NFL Draft, the week was about proving to teams his play can translate to the next level. 

“I feel like this season was okay for me. I feel like I could have played a little better, but as far as being here, I’m going to show everybody how competitive I am,” King told reporters, including Nick Farabaugh of Steelers Now, during the week.

Two things stand out in his mind that separates him from the pack.

“Confidence and competitiveness. The type of guy I am,” King said. “I’m a big energy guy and feed off making big plays.”

In three years as a Nittany Lion, King totaled 82 tackles, 5.5 tackles for loss, three interceptions, and 28 passes defended in 38 games. He made four tackles in the National team’s 16-7 win against the American squad. Isaac also made two stops and Johnson had two catches for 12 yards. 

My passion for the game,” King said. “I love the game of football and have been playing it since I was a little kid. I keep that same passion and confidence that I had since when I first started, and it’s only going to get stronger.” 

King was challenged on numerous occasions by opposing wide receivers during practice and struggled at times to keep up. 

Following a tremendous 2022 season with Joey Porter Jr. on the other side of the field, King took a step back this year. He closed last year with 21 passes defended, one forced fumble, and fumble recovery, plus three tackles-for-loss in 13 games. King opted out of the Peach Bowl after not grabbing an interception in 12 games while recording two passes defended. Penn State lost to Ole Miss 38-25.  He still keeps in contact with JPJ regularly.

“That’s my dawg. His whole process and going through this same process as I am [during this time] last year, I was all eyes and all ears,” King said. “I was asking questions, seeing what was happening, watching everything. I’m calling him and texting him for advice; he always has my back.”

He pointed to K.J. Winston as the next leader in the Penn State secondary and also noted that Zion Tracy, Elliot Washington, and Cam Miller have good things ahead of them.

“I’m very happy I made the decision to go to Penn State,” King said. “Going forward, I know all the young guys are ready to take the weight and put it on their shoulders.”

Could King reunite with Porter on the Steelers? King did not meet with Mike Tomlin during the week but did meet with Steelers representatives.

“They’re a very good program,” King said. “They made it to the playoffs this year. They have a lot of good pieces and good vets. They’re a really good team. I had an interview with the Steelers, and it went well”

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