The big man from Northern Iowa is one of the most intriguing prospects in this year’s draft. Could he be a fit for Kansas City?
The game of football is one that involves teaching, as well as learning. There is a give and take between players and coaches to get the best product possible. There are a few things that coaches can’t teach though, they come naturally with some players, and these are often the traits that set them aside from their peers. Spencer Brown has a couple of these traits.
One of the more underrated prospects in this draft Spencer Brown is a towering offensive tackle from Northern Iowa, standing 6’9” inches tall and weight 311 pounds. To go with his massive frame, the former high school tight end has outstanding athletic skills, he moves easily in the open field, rarely laboring, and has explosion not often seen from a player his size. The other trait he possesses that coaches can’t teach is his relentless effort to finish every play, and physically dominate his opponent.
I have never seen a team use an offensive tackle in the screen game off of a backside pull. This is unheard of, but Brown moves over 20 yards from the backside of the play and destroys the linebacker who went to chase the screen. The big man can move in space and the times up the hit perfectly with a flat path.
With his length one of the strengths of Brown’s games is reach blocking. His first step out has a few hitches in it, and is something he will have to work on some, but he does do a good job of getting his hips open to the defender and splitting his body.
Of course what gets tackles drafted into the NFL, and what gets them paid in the NFL is their ability to pass protect, and Brown has come a long way in his time at UNI in improving his pass protection. At times he can let the edge rusher get pressure on him, but his long arms help him erase the gap as more often than not he is able to run them past the quarterback.
Brown could be an excellent fit for the Chiefs, especially since they are going to need another tackle in the next couple of seasons due to the salary cap and contract situations. The Chiefs are a heavy passing team and need to find a tackle who can keep Mahomes clean.
Brown is hard to power rush because his long arms don’t let defenders get a clean shot on him for a bull rush, but speed rushers struggle to get around his frame. These players often have to over-extend to get a push on him, but that opens them up to Brown’s favorite counter move, the grab, and snatch, which he uses to finish blocks. Even if he still needs to clean up some small details his frame is natural for being a high-volume pass protector.
As far as the run game goes the Chiefs run primarily zone, power, and pin and pull. Brown is perfect for all three. In the zone, he can reach block well, work into combination with tight ends, and takes good paths to the second level. For power, he can use his size to crash down on play side double teams and create movement off the ball. For pin and pull this is where we could see his superior athletic blocking style with him lead blocking on the edge looking to take out smaller defenders. This is also where the Chiefs can see his maul.
Coaches can’t teach size and physicality and Brown has plenty of both. He didn’t play at the highest level of college football, but the talent is talent no matter what level it is at. Men that size are not supposed to move like that, but his constant hustle to finish plays show he is much more than just a big athlete. The Chiefs need someone upfront with some edge, someone who is going to make sure play in play out that Patrick Mahomes is going to go untouched and be able to defend him when he is touched. Spencer Brown could be the man for the job.