Former Navy cornerback Cameron Kinley proved that he has the physical intangibles needed to play in the NFL. More importantly though, he possesses leadership skills that'll allow him to have success away from the gridiron.
Kinley was a reliable playmaker for the Midshipmen, compiling 88 total tackles, 12 pass breakups and an interception. He then showcased his athleticism at his pro day, running the 40-yard dash in 4.52 seconds and posting a 33-inch vertical.
While he's certainly proud of all his success on the football field, Kinley's main focus is to make a positive impact on his community.
That's why Kinley isn't just aiming to be an NFL cornerback, he wants to eventually become the president of the United States.
We sat down with Cameron Kinley to discuss his career at Navy, his lofty dreams regarding politics, and more.
The Spun: How has this entire draft process been for you?
Cameron Kinley: I’s definitely been a blessing. I’m trying to soak in every opportunity that I’ve received. I was able to participate in the College Gridiron Showcase back in January and the Hula Bowl in early February. It’s been a little different for me given my situation with the service academy, so I wasn’t able to train at any facility or anything like that. I’ve been training on campus with the help of one of my strength coaches.
The Spun: How would you grade your pro day performance?
CK: I’m definitely very content with the numbers I was able to put up. Bench press was honestly the thing I was proud of the most. I had benched two or three times since January, so to be able to put up 10 reps of 225 pounds, I was pretty happy with myself. I ran the 40-yard dash in 4.52 seconds. I feel like I could’ve done better in the three-cone drill, but overall it was good given the circumstances I was under.
The Spun: What’s your favorite moment at Navy?
CK: I would say it goes back to 2019. Of course, beating Army was a good experience, but senior night we were playing SMU and we were both searching for our 10th win. The game was coming down to the wire and it was fourth-and-goal with about two minutes left in the game. I was matched up against James Proche, who now plays for the Baltimore Ravens, and I was able to deflect a pass thrown his way with the game on the line. To be able to contribute to that win and send the seniors out on a positive note was a great moment.
The Spun: I saw in an interview with CBS Sports you talked about maybe one day being the President of the United States. Can you tell me a little bit about that?
CK: That’s definitely one of my long-term goals, to be the president of this country. It all goes back to my passion and my why, which is to serve others and make a better environment for the less fortunate. During my time at the academy, I noticed politics offer a lot of avenues that would allow me to give back to the community. I want politics to be centered around the people rather than selfish desires, so that’s ultimately where that goal comes from.
The Spun: You recently said you’re going to send out short messages for mental and spiritual growth. Why is that so important to you?
CK: I started doing a 30-second Thursday segment on my Instagram account recently. I’m trying to use the gift that God has given me with the ability of public speaking. Something I’m big on is mental and spiritual growth. Your mind controls most of your actions and how you go about your day-to-day life. I truly feel that if people can control the way they view different situations, they’ll be able to approach them in a better manner and be able to achieve their dreams. I’m hoping I can touch people every Thursday with a quick message.
The Spun: What are your best qualities, on and off the field?
CK: Off the field, I feel like it has to be my leadership. My parents raised me to be someone who leads by example. On the field, I would say I’m very disciplined and smart. I watch a lot of film and study different tendencies. Whatever technique a coach needs me to play, I’ll do it.
The Spun: Which defensive backs do you like to watch on film?
CK: Growing up in high school, l I fell in love with Richard Sherman’s approach to the game. Every since he’s coming into the league, he’s been a baller due to his mindset. I’ve definitely kept up with him throughout my career. Recently, I’ve been watching Stephon Gilmore and Jalen Ramsey. They’re two of the best in the game today, so I’m trying to see if I can take some aspects of their game and implement them into mine.
The Spun: Which quarterback have you dreamed of intercepting a pass from?
CK:Tom Brady for sure. He’s going to go down as one of the greatest to ever play the game. If I can pick off Brady or Patrick Mahomes, I’ll cherish that moment.
The Spun: Has it hit you that you’re a month away from making the NFL?
CK: Most definitely. I’ve had a countdown on my phone since the start of the year. Whatever happens, happens. If my phone rings during the draft, I’ll be very grateful and definitely break out into tears. I’ll embrace my parents during that moment.
The Spun: What is an NFL team getting in Cameron Kinley?
CK: You’re getting a football junkie who loves the game, but most importantly, loves those around him. Everything I do is for my coaches, teammates and fan base. I use this game as a form of worship to God for blessing me with the abilities to play. You’re getting a passionate guy, a leader, and a guy who is going to bring a lot of good energy to the locker room.
Kinley told The Spun that he’s already had conversations with 13 NFL teams since his pro day. He’s drawn the most interest from the Buffalo Bills and Minnesota Vikings.
You can read more of our interviews with athletes or media stars here.