The Baltimore Ravens traded up into the early part of the second round of the 2013 NFL Draft to grab who they think will be the next great Ravens linebacker to fill the void created by the retirement of Ray Lewis and loss of Dannell Ellerbe to free agency. A lot of fans knew of Kansas State middle linebacker Arthur Brown, but nowhere nearly as much as one guy who followed him for most of his college football career.
"Baltimore got a great value by picking up Arthur Brown at the end of the second round. Some mock drafts projected Brown as a mid-to-end first round pick. Given what we saw on the field from him for two years, that sounded about right. Brown was the Big 12 defensive player of the year last season.Brown is by nature a quiet guy who prefers to lead by example. He became a little more vocal in his second year at K-State, but my guess is he'll return to his instincts as an NFL rookie. Vocal or not, you'll always get maximum effort from him. And maximum effort from a player with Brown's athletic ability is an impressive sight.Brown's range extends from sideline-to-sideline from the middle linebacker position. Part of that's due to his speed - he famously chased down Robert Griffin III from behind two years ago - but part of it is his preparation and instincts. Although he's not the biggest linebacker, he showed he can take on and shed blocks to make tackles against the power running game. And he's tough. By far the best defender K-State had last year, he had to play a lot, and when you're in the middle of that much action, it's impossible not to get dinged up. Brown played through it all, nearly leading the Big 12's best points-per-game defense to an undefeated regular season.I'm not going to predict that Arthur Brown is the next Ray Lewis, because those expectations are unfair. But he's walking into a perfect situation from a professional development standpoint by getting to play with the Ravens. I'll be very surprised if he isn't a solid contributor for many years in Baltimore. "