PDA

View Full Version : More on Ron Brace article



Oviedo
03-17-2009, 12:12 PM
From the Dayton Daily News about my favorite pick for 1.32. Seems to be a high character guy in the Steelers mold.


Boston College DT Ron Brace in draft day demand
By Carlos "Big C" Holmes

Staff Writer

Sunday, March 15, 2009

One half of Boston College's defensive tackle duo, Ron Brace is thought to be a rare commodity in this year's NFL draft. He is believed to be the only one of his kind at the Nose Tackle position, a position hard to find and unique in itself.

Aware of the shortage, NFL teams are really starting to take notice of this monster in the middle.

Brace is drawing interest from a number of teams that include Tampa Bay, New Orleans and Denver. He has a private workout scheduled with the Broncos later this week.

Another team said to have some interest is the Detroit Lions after trading their top defensive tackle Cory Redding to the Seattle Seahawks. Brace, who is an Albert Haynesworth type tackle, would be an ideal fit in Jim Schwartz's defense. Schwartz coached Haynesworth when they were both with the Tennessee Titians.

Brace's agent Nate Haber of Players Rep Sports Management commented recently on what sets his client apart from the field.

"Ron's an interesting prospect because he's really the only true nose tackle in this draft that warrants a first-day draft grade," Haber said. "If you want that big run stuffer, a mauler who will collapse the pocket and occupy several linemen, then he's your guy.

"It's exciting because we've received just as much interest from 4-3 teams as we have from 3-4 teams. When you have 32 potential employers in need of your services, things are good."

ESPN draft analyst Todd McShay supports the agent's statement on the D-tackle position.

"Guys like Mississippi's Peria Jerry and [Missouri's] Evander Hood are all 3-technique, undersized guys," said McShay. "So if you don't get Brace in the first two rounds, you'll be looking for backup guys in the fourth, fifth or sixth round."

That said Brace could very easily be the second D-tackle off the board in the first round behind teammate B.J. Raji due to his versatility to play either tackle position.

Brace yourself

The 6-foot-3, 330-pound Brace is a smash-mouth player who is tough in the trenches. He's a bonafide run-stuffer but can get penetration during gap assignments to wreak havoc in the backfield.

He's explosive off the snap and very athletic for a guy his size, showing outstanding agility and quickness to angle and stunt.

Brace demonstrates solid hand technique and packs a powerful hand punch. However, he will need to continue to develop on his pass-rushing technique early in his career.

Brace shows good pursuit; does a great job shedding blocks and anchors extremely well. A large part of Raji's success could be attributed to Brace who saw a lot of double-teams.

The Cincinnati Bengals coaching staff marveled over the player's ability and intelligence when they coached him at the Senior Bowl in January.

Bottom line, Brace has a tremendous work ethic and would be a force in the middle of any D-line.

Downtime

When Brace is not wreaking havoc on the playing field he's following in his father's (Ron Brace II) footsteps, working with troubled youths in his community.

"I think a lot of youths are being misled by thinking that a life of crime is the only way to get out of a bad situation in life," Brace said in a recent phone interview. "But realistically they're digging themselves a bigger hole. They need someone to teach them that there is a better way to make a life for them."

Brace learned at an early age that crime doesn't pay. As a youngster, he was brought to Westfield Youth Services Center where his father worked, every weekend for a reality check. He saw a lot of his childhood chums there in confinement during the visits and knew right away that this was not the life for him.

Brace said anytime an opportunity presents itself to speak to the kids he's there, because many of them come from the same area of Springfield, Massachusetts where he grew up.

"Some of these youths are coming to believe that if they're not making it in school or sports then that's the end. That's not true. They're just being fed the wrong ideals on what life is about. So a lot of them think that life is about going out and hanging with gangs, smoking marijuana, drinking, and thinking that's the life. When in reality it's really not. This is wide spread throughout the country and not just in the area I come from.

"I think these kids need a better role model than I would say a rapper," Brace said. "They really need someone who comes from their area and will give them a more realistic view on how they can make it in life. Not everyone is going to be a rapper. Most rappers who are successful are talking about a life where you're in the club all night, poppin' bottles, selling this and that to everybody, and kids are being made to believe that this is a life of success. They're just selling lies. The kids need to be fed something truthful and I'm willing to do that."

Brace's passion for helping troubled youth is equal or greater than his passion for the game of football.

Brace is a well-rounded individual both on and off the field. He would be an asset to any team who choices to draft him.


Carlos "Big C" Holmes covers the NFL for Dayton Daily News.

steeler_fan_in_t.o.
03-17-2009, 12:34 PM
Nice article, but if he really is as good a prospect at both positions as they say then he might not even be close enough for us to realistically move up for.

WoodleyofTroy
03-17-2009, 03:31 PM
Brace is slowing working in his way into my top 5. I just need to get past the whole him and Raji being on the field at the same time thing.

RuthlessBurgher
03-17-2009, 03:36 PM
I just need to get past the whole him and Raji being on the field at the same time thing.

Yeah, me too. I thought Shaun Rogers and Casey Hampton feeding off each other (and feeding on everything else apparently) at Texas was a cause for concern when we took Big Snack at #19 overall, but that turned out as well as could have been expected. Even though Brace would not be my personal top choice at #32, I would certainly not whine about it if the team went in that direction.

WoodleyofTroy
03-17-2009, 03:50 PM
I just need to get past the whole him and Raji being on the field at the same time thing.

Yeah, me too. I thought Shaun Rogers and Casey Hampton feeding off each other (and feeding on everything else apparently) at Texas was a cause for concern when we took Big Snack at #19 overall, but that turned out as well as could have been expected. Even though Brace would not be my personal top choice at #32, I would certainly not whine about it if the team went in that direction.

I definitely feel better about Brace as a prospect than I did about Kentwaan Balmer around this time year. Didn't want him at all.

But yeah, Brace would be a Timmons/Hampton kind of pick for sure.

Chadman
03-17-2009, 10:37 PM
Chadman was against drafting Brace originally, BUT...he's now in the 'mix of players worth looking at'. Sounds like a high-quality guy that can play at a good level.

Ron Brace, James Lauranaitis, DJ Moore, Clay Matthews, Alex Mack, Percy Harvin & Darius Butler are Chadman's 'Chosen Few' at this point for #32.

pfelix73
03-17-2009, 11:06 PM
As I have been from the beginning, I am still on the Ron Brace band wagon....

Let's see if they bring him in for a visit.....

Steel Life
03-18-2009, 12:15 AM
Count me as one who's against picking him, I just don't see him as a premier player. He was never a factor the way Raji was - even while Raji was out. The other thing that concerns me is the back trouble...nose tackles with back issues are a bad combination. But even more telling is watching the tape of Brace & Raji on BC's pro-day. Watching the two it's clear that Raji is much more athletic, moving fluidly while Brace lumbers, struggling to coordinate his movements. Maybe I've been spoiled by the athleticism of Keisel, Smith & even Hampton, but I don't see Brace in the same mold. That said...this is why I'd rather see Gilbert picked - couple his size with his athleticism & the fact that he can add another 15-20 pounds & I see him as a perfect replacement for Keisel.

Plus...watch out for Dorrell Scott from Clemson in the 3rd round.

frankthetank1
03-18-2009, 08:16 AM
Count me as one who's against picking him, I just don't see him as a premier player. He was never a factor the way Raji was - even while Raji was out. The other thing that concerns me is the back trouble...nose tackles with back issues are a bad combination. But even more telling is watching the tape of Brace & Raji on BC's pro-day. Watching the two it's clear that Raji is much more athletic, moving fluidly while Brace lumbers, struggling to coordinate his movements. Maybe I've been spoiled by the athleticism of Keisel, Smith & even Hampton, but I don't see Brace in the same mold. That said...this is why I'd rather see Gilbert picked - couple his size with his athleticism & the fact that he can add another 15-20 pounds & I see him as a perfect replacement for Keisel.

Plus...watch out for Dorrell Scott from Clemson in the 3rd round.

raji is smaller than brace so i wouldnt say he is more athletic. i have a feeling brace will be better in the nfl than raji. one thing is for sure raji cant play in a 3-4 but i think brace could. also two years ago when raji had to sit out a year brace dominated

SteelCzar76
03-18-2009, 09:06 AM
I'm of the train of thought that if we are going to stand fast at 32,...henceforth only having the option of selecting not only Brace, but players like Moala, Mack, Gilbert, Robinson, Hood or reach for a Tiny Corner,....trade down.

frankthetank1
03-18-2009, 09:15 AM
I'm of the train of thought that if we are going to stand fast at 32,...henceforth only having the option of selecting not only Brace, but players like Moala, Mack, Gilbert, Robinson, Hood or reach for a Tiny Corner,....trade down.

if brace and mack are still there at 1.32 i will be ecstatic

Northern_Blitz
03-18-2009, 09:56 AM
Count me as one who's against picking him, I just don't see him as a premier player. He was never a factor the way Raji was - even while Raji was out.

Is it worth mentioning that people who arn't familiar with the Steelers who watch our defence would probably say that Hampton isn't a factor. He only had 22 tackles and 1 sack all year.

Haption isn't the one that makes "splash plays", but his play lets others do that.

For this defence we need a DT like Hamption that can suck up the double / tripple teams and doesn't mind letting others get the glory.

I don't watch college, so I don't know if Brace is of the same mold. What I do know is that Hampton will be hard to replace. It's something we have to think about doing soon. I think that NT is the most important position in our D, and I would be happy using a 1st rounder if the FO thinks this is the guy.

Oviedo
03-18-2009, 11:00 AM
[quote="Steel Life":2qubjetu]Count me as one who's against picking him, I just don't see him as a premier player. He was never a factor the way Raji was - even while Raji was out.

Is it worth mentioning that people who arn't familiar with the Steelers who watch our defence would probably say that Hampton isn't a factor. He only had 22 tackles and 1 sack all year.

Haption isn't the one that makes "splash plays", but his play lets others do that.

For this defence we need a DT like Hamption that can suck up the double / tripple teams and doesn't mind letting others get the glory.

I don't watch college, so I don't know if Brace is of the same mold. What I do know is that Hampton will be hard to replace. It's something we have to think about doing soon. I think that NT is the most important position in our D, and I would be happy using a 1st rounder if the FO thinks this is the guy.[/quote:2qubjetu]

Brace is probably much more like Hampton than his team mate BJ Raji is. Raji is more of a penetrating DT while Brace is the typical dig in and don't move type of DT that you need to play NT in the 3-4.

Obviously IMO he would be a great pick at 1.32 although if Tyson Jackson was there I would take him first.

ramblinjim
03-18-2009, 01:14 PM
I dont' watch as much college ball as a lot of guys but here's the thing. Whoever said NT was the most important part of the 3/4 is right on the money. There just aren't that many guys out there that can play NT well. If the FO thinks Brace can hold down the middle of our 3/4 for years to come and he falls to us at 1.32, then we need to take him. If there is a question as to one way or the other and the choices are Brace or Mack, then I think you need to go sure-fire and take the big center.

If for some reason both guys fall to us, what a fantastic problem to have!!

Best regards Nation!!

RJ!

Northern_Blitz
03-18-2009, 01:54 PM
I dont' watch as much college ball as a lot of guys but here's the thing. Whoever said NT was the most important part of the 3/4 is right on the money. There just aren't that many guys out there that can play NT well. If the FO thinks Brace can hold down the middle of our 3/4 for years to come and he falls to us at 1.32, then we need to take him. If there is a question as to one way or the other and the choices are Brace or Mack, then I think you need to go sure-fire and take the big center.

If for some reason both guys fall to us, what a fantastic problem to have!!

Best regards Nation!!

RJ!

From what I've heard C is deep this year and NT is never deep. Therefore, I think if we had to choose in that situation I'd pick up the NT of the future and try to get the C of the future later in the draft. I think that good NTs are more difficult to find than good Cs.

I also think that a good / great NT is more important to our system than a good / great C.

From what I've heard on here, I'd be OK with either pick.

Just my :2c /10.