A sports reporter covering the San Francisco 49ers criticized 49ers defensive tackle Javon Kinlaw, and Kinlaw replied in a heated online interview.
Early in their career, first-round draft picks often get more attention than their late-round counterparts, and this is both good and bad. It means that successful rookie campaigns are highlighted, but it also means that those who are considered “draft busts” tend to face heavy scrutiny.
It’s much too early to call Javon Kinlaw a “bust”: the No. 14 overall pick in the 2020 NFL Draft made the PFWA All-Rookie in his first season, and his sophomore season was shortened in October due to a torn ACL.
Despite this, All49ers publisher Grant Cohn went ahead and hurled a multitude of insults Kinlaw’s way. According to Cohn, this is a small sample of what he’s said about Kinlaw that prompted the defensive tackle to confront him at a 49ers practice.
"“Javon, what are you so upset about? Is it the fact that I said you have an 80-year-old knee…is it the fact that I said you’re unprofessional and immature? It escapes me, which of the hundred negative things I’ve said about Javon Kinlaw the last couple of years moved him to approach me in such a way.”"
Apparently Kinlaw and Cohn didn’t speak at the practice, but Kinlaw approached him and stood behind him to physically intimidate him.
A few hours later, Kinlaw confronted Cohn during a video interview, telling him to stop criticizing him.
Javon Kinlaw calls out 49ers reporter for “hundreds” of criticisms
Some of what Kinlaw said to Cohn is detailed below, per AwfulAnnouncing:
"“Stop talking about people like people don’t got families,” Kinlaw said. “Stop doing that sh**, bruh. What you get out of doing this? What satisfaction do you get out of this, man…You’re analyzing people like they’re not human, fam.I understand that’s your job – but, bruh – you gotta start going about this thing in a different way. You talk sh*t about everybody on this team, bruh. Nobody f**** with that. Nobody f**** with you, bruh. You don’t even understand that. Nobody f**** with you, brother. You need to go find a new job.”"
To Kinlaw’s point about other players disliking Cohn, fellow San Francisco 49ers defensive tackle Arik Armstead agreed with Kinlaw, sharing a video of Cohn and calling him a “low life.” Deebo Samuel, Brandon Aiyuk and others apparently criticized Cohn as well.
In the video, Cohn said that, “if [Kinlaw] would have touched me, if he would have pushed me, I could have retired today.” Cohn said he was thinking, “‘Oh damn, I’m about to retire. I’m about to be out of the game. I’m about to be a multi-millionaire.'”
Although Cohn repeatedly took opportunity to antagonize Kinlaw and escalate the situation to promote his content, Kinlaw’s response may not go over well with the 49ers camp.