Did you watch the 2013 NFL draft like me? I truly enjoyed watching the Wizard of Oz draft the future of our new Ravens team. Not only did the Ravens fill a need, they stuck with their principal of “best player available.” I concur, it’s a luxury to fill a void AND the best player falls to you at once. As I mentioned in a previous article, the Ravens drafted two starters on defense this year. 1st round pick- Safety Matt Elam from University of Florida (Gators) and 2nd round pick- ILB Arthur Brown from Kansas State. These guys are straight up ball players, and I guarantee they are NFL caliber ready.
S, Matt Elam
I watched several hours of video on Matt Elam. This guy is a reincarnation of Ed Reed, and Bernard Pollard. Can you imagine that? A hard hitting, tackling, instinctive, AND ball hawk safety in one? It’s almost un-imaginable if you ask me. Elam, is also known for film studying. He is speedy, relentless, hard hitting, instinctive, explosive, and excels in coverage. That’s something well welcomed in the AFC North with the forever hating Steelers, rising Bengals, and the re-building Browns. The Elam pick was the best fit for the Ravens. He’s a fighter that overcame much adversity in his young life, and he plays like a Raven.
As a first round pick, he faces a tall task of stepping in the shoes of future HOF, Ed Reed. That task will be very daunting. He is not Ed Reed, and people need to be realistic about that. Please, don’t expect him to be Reed. Reed was a special player, and the greatest safety to ever play the game. Elam, is an amazing and exciting player as well. However, he has to create his own legacy, and not continue the legacy left by Reed. It is Elam’s legacy we should be focusing on now. Elam, is a younger, and faster version of Reed during his prime. The more he learns the defensive scheme, the more he will grow into the role. The starting job will not be given to Elam, but I believe he will earn it. Meet your new starting safety of the Baltimore Ravens. Great pick by the Ravens.
ILB, Arthur Brown
I also watched several hours of Arthur Brown on video, and I was absolutely amazed at what I witnessed. This guy is relentless, EXTREMELY instinctive, explosive, fast, a sideline to sideline LB, a tackling machine, and runs around the field like a mad man. He is a complete line backer. I watched Brown make play, after play, all over the field. I then compared video between him, and Ray Lewis days at the University of Miami. Retrospectively, Brown, is a splitting image of Lewis on the collegiate level. Although, the pressure will be on Brown to step in Lewis shoes, it’s not fair to expect Brown to be. In fact, Brown, hasn’t taken one snap on the NFL level. He is a rookie that has to learn the game at another level. Besides, there will never be another player like, Lewis. However, I concede that Brown will be a more dominant player, as he grows into the role. Brown was team captain of his prespective team at Kansas state. He demonstrated true leadership, and he displayed them very well. Even though, he has to earn a starting job on the roster, I promise you, Brown will be a starter from day one. My gut feeling tells me he will impress the coaches. Even though the Ravens traded up six spots with the Seattle Seahawks to get him, the Ravens were very fortunate to land him
The Arrival of A New Generation of Ravens Defense
Both Elam, and Brown has leadership experience, and there leadership was a factor of their sucess on the collegiate level. This is important for a Ravens football team whom lost many leaders, due to retirement, release or free agency. Although, I must warn you that the two will not be prominent leaders in their rookie season. NFL leadership is a role they must grow into. Brown, and Elam are our Ravens leaders of the future. When the 2013 football season begins, we will be welcoming a new, faster, and younger defense. Both Elam, and Brown will grow together as football players. We will watch their developmental growth, take charge, and come together as they diagnose the plays of their opponent. As they get acclimated to the NFL level, they will put their stamp on a long tradition of hard nose defense of the Baltimore Ravens. They are rookies, so yes there will be growing pains, and they will make rookie mistakes. I predict, these two players will have an immediate impact on the football field, and their mere presence will be help solidify the Ravens defense. These two draft picks will be talked about for years to come. After all, Oz did draft Ray and Ed Jr. I welcome the new generation of Ravens. I’m so excited, and I cannot wait to watch them play.
The Championship Vision
Elam, and Brown will win their first championship as a Raven this upcoming season, and they will be a pivotal part during this Super Bowl run. They joined this Ravens squad at the right time, as they will be apart of the dynasty. I know, hard to believe right? A repeat sounds ridiculous, right? Yes, you’re reading this correctly. Another Vince Lombardi Trophy is making it’s way to Baltimore, this upcoming season. I have foreseen the vision of a Super-Bowl repeat. The same vision I had before the three game loosing streak. The same vision I had during the ass kicking in Houston. Yes, I know it’s a high bar. But, this is not a bar that I have set. It is an actual vision revealed to me. This is going to be one special season. A season that will be discussed for years to come. A season of the ages. I’m ready, and I cannot wait.