College Coach’s Take: Brown Was A Steal In 5th Round

Longhorns DBs coach believes Brown’s broken arm as a senior hurt his draft stock.

Posted by Mike Duffy on Wednesday, June 22nd, 2011 at 11:12 am | Categories: Mike Duffy

Had rookie cornerback Chykie Brown not fractured his forearm nine games into his senior year at the University of Texas, his former coach doesn’t think he would have been available well into the fifth round.

Thus, Longhorns Defensive Backs Coach Duane Akina believes the Ravens got a steal in his former pupil.

“He played a lot of good football for us. He started in the National Championship game, started in the bowl against Ohio State,” Akina told BaltimoreRavens.com.  “It’s unfortunate he broke his arm this year because I would have loved to see him finish out his year. He was also invited to the Senior Bowl, and I think he would have excelled there.

“They got a good pick in the fifth round, because I think that injury hurt him.”

Brown – whose first name is pronounced “Shockey” – was playing well before his injury, posting 19 tackles (two for a loss), one sack and seven pass breakups in 10 weeks of football.

And with Brown heading the Texas secondary for much of the season, the unit finished sixth in the nation by allowing only 161.6 passing yards per game.

Even though Brown’s setback put him down early, Akina said the 161st-overall selection has shown such leadership in the past.

As a redshirt sophomore in 2008, Brown was the elder statesman in a defensive backfield that featured fellow sophomore Curtis Brown – who was drafted by the Pittsburgh Steelers – at corner, freshman Earl Thomas (Seattle Seahawks) at safety and freshman Aaron Williams (Buffalo Bills) at nickel back.

Akina remembered Chykie Brown shining during a game against Big 12 powerhouse Oklahoma, who featured an outstanding receiving corps and quarterback Sam Bradford at the time.

“Chykie was really the veteran of the group back there,” Akina said.  “In that game, there was a critical third down late in the third quarter that was a must-stop situation for us.  They ran a deep post route and Chykie knocked the ball off the kid’s body to really push momentum our way to solidify the victory.

“It really spoke to Chykie’s leadership and ability to step up when he needs to.”

At the next level, Akina is confident that Brown will be a solid cog in the Ravens’ attacking defense, especially with his 6-foot, 194-pound frame, talent in man-to-man coverage and affinity for special teams.

“He was a gunner on our punt team, a starter on our punt return team and was also on our kickoff team,” Akina said of Brown’s special teams ability.  “He understands the importance of that stage of the game, and a big athlete who can run like that, I think, will make him a priority for his special teams coach to want to get him on the field.

“It’s going to be a great situation for Chykie,” Akina continued.  “With a couple of veteran players back there in Ed Reed and Ray Lewis and an attacking system – kind of like we were at Texas – I think it’s a great fit.”

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