According to NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport, Baltimore Ravens 2x Pro Bowl offensive tackle Orlando Brown Jr. is requesting a trade, so that he can start at left tackle again—as All-Pro Ronnie Stanley currently has the blind-side locked up long-term for Baltimore:
Sources: #Ravens OT Orlando Brown wants to be traded. After tweeting his desire to only play left tackle – he filled in there for Ronnie Stanley and shined this season – Brown will only play for a team that will play him at his preferred spot. Baltimore would need a major haul.— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) February 10, 2021
On Orlando Brown: The #Ravens have Ronnie Stanley coming back at LT, but they value Orlando Brown significantly. Would need major compensation to deal him. But with the focus so intensely on QBs, the guys who protect them are just as valuable. https://t.co/P1Esi7R5ar— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) February 10, 2021
Of course, the Indianapolis Colts have a major hole at starting left tackle that Brown would more than adequately fill—after longtime veteran anchor Anthony Castonzo’s early offseason retirement.
Originally a 2018 3rd round pick by the Ravens out of Oklahoma, the massive 6’8”, 345 pound Brown has transformed himself into one of the league’s best young offensive tackles.
Still only 24 years old, Brown could be a core left tackle for years to come for the Colts—although a mega long-term contract extension would immediately need to be hammered out by both sides upon/before striking a deal (with Indianapolis having $69.2M of projected cap space this offseason—but admittedly, some big contracts coming up that could complicate matters):
Trading (OT) Orlando Brown#Ravens keep $216,430 of dead cap ($920k saved)— Spotrac (@spotrac) February 10, 2021
New team acquires a 1 year, $920,000 non-guaranteed contract (extension required).https://t.co/RkvwCQQwyc
The price would presumably be the Colts first round pick (#21)—or less likely, no worse than their second round pick, but Brown should have many serious trade suitors regardless.
There’s projected to be heavy competition to acquire him among NFL left tackle-needy teams.
Brown has started all 32 games over the past two seasons for Baltimore and has appeared in 48 games with 42 total career starts.
Per Pro Football Focus (subscription), Brown received a +76.4 grade overall this past season, which was the 28th best among all NFL offensive tackles.
In the wake of Stanley’s season-ending ankle injury, and in relief of him, Brown played 700 total snaps at left tackle compared to 345 snaps at right tackle in 2020.
During 11 starts at left tackle this past season (via PFF), Brown didn’t surrender a single sack in pass protection and allowed 19 total QB pressures. He committed 3 total penalties overall.
So what could Colts fans reasonably expect?
Check out this block by Orlando Brown Jr (#78). I had an involuntary, guttural reaction.— Robert Mays (@robertmays) November 2, 2020
Also a great play call. pic.twitter.com/op29XlNJvr
Nice block by Orlando Brown in this touchdown.pic.twitter.com/80q7JYTaoF— Dov Kleiman (@NFL_DovKleiman) November 18, 2018
Option Football = Numbers.. Check out Orlando Brown Jr. (78) climbing to the 2nd level. Stalk block by the receiver, 42 running his feet after contact. 8 and 21 are pretty good too! Every play is a new team effort! #spreadoffense pic.twitter.com/KDvotHG3VO— SpreadOffense.com (@SpreadOffense) November 4, 2019
Great block by Orlando Brown to turn 95 and open a big hole for Edwards pic.twitter.com/6RhR3NiMiY— Billy M (@BillyM_91) December 9, 2020
Brown is an absolute road grader in run blocking with his massive size, immense strength, and surprisingly nimble feet for his sheer stature—with the ability to move in space and get to the second level of opposing defenses to throw bone-crushing blocks.
He’d fit right in with the Colts’ power zone blocking scheme (and alongside All-Pro offensive guard Quenton Nelson on the left side in that regard—delivering ‘pain-cakes’).
Brown’s already a pretty good pass blocker too—with room for future growth, but run blocking is his calling card right now when comparing the two.
Of course, Brown is the son of the late great NFL offensive tackle Orlando ‘Zeus’ Brown Sr., who played 9 professional seasons for both the Baltimore Ravens and Cleveland Browns—meaning he has a prominent football pedigree—as the sport runs through his impressive bloodlines.
Still at a very young age, Brown’s best football is presumably still yet to come as he continues to improve and develop at offensive tackle, meaning he could be a blindside bookend for years to come in Indianapolis—although the cost (both through draft compensation and a new lucrative contract) won’t be cheap.