Orlando Brown Jr. is on the other side of a lot of hope at this point.
It wasn’t that long ago that Brown, the mammoth left tackle imported by K.C. Chiefs general manager Brett Veach this spring, was demanding a trade in the hopes of moving to the left side of the offensive line. It meant changing cities and franchises, and somehow the Baltimore Ravens allowed it to happen with the very team that’s been standing in front of them for three years in the AFC.
Now that Brown is settled as the new o-line cornerstone protecting the greatest quarterback in the NFL for a team who will be Super Bowl contenders for the foreseeable future, he’s ready to get to work. As his rookie deal nears its end, Brown is primed for a major payday from the Chiefs to make sure he remains a fixture in front of Patrick Mahomes. Yet he also knows that after asking to play this position and after the Chiefs traded a first-round pick for him that there’s something to prove.
When discussing the offseason with reporters from training camp on Monday, however, Brown says he’s always played as if he’s got a lot to prove and this year isn’t going to be any different in that regard.
Orlando Brown says he’s ready to get to work for the Chiefs.
“Personally, I’ve taken it upon myself in my life to really feel like I’ve got something to prove,” said Brown. “I’m a very limited athlete as a player. As a person, I’m not the shortest of guys, obviously. I don’t often win the leverage battle. I always feel like I’ve got a lot to prove. I’m attacking this year, just like every other year, to get better, to be the best player that I can be to put this team in Super Bowl contention.”
Part of Brown’s work to get better for the coming season included studying film of left tackles in order to mentally understand what it might take to play the position for Chiefs head coach Andy Reid. Brown said he went back in the archives to look at the film of former left tackles under Reid, especially from his days with the Philadelphia Eagles.
“I studied a lot more film with guys I was unfamiliar with like Tra Thomas, looking at a little bit of King Dunlap film—guys that Coach Reid has worked with,” said Brown. “I was going back and looking at some Jonathan Ogden film as well, and Jon Runyan as well from back in Philly. There was a lot of things to take from those different players. Obviously we’ve got a lot of similarity in size and height and just how Coach Reid was able to use them in his offense.”
Brown mentioned to reporters that communication has been strong among the offensive linemen brought in to play for the Chiefs this offseason, a group that includes rookies like Creed Humphrey and Trey Smith and veterans like Joe Thuney and Kyle Long. Together, he referred to them as “renegades” in that they play emotionally and said he was hopeful for the way they’d come together.
“We play a position that’s hard, that’s very different, I feel like, from a lot of different positions. Sometimes all you have is the guys on that line of scrimmage with you to lean on, and I think we’ve got a really good group going into this.”
More than anything, Brown is ready to get down to it. He has a job to do and he’s ready to prove it at a new position in a new city next to new teammates for a new franchise. So even as he changes from the run-heavy Ravens to the pass-happy Chiefs, Brown said he’s pursuing excellence either way.
“You talk to any offensive lineman, they’ll tell you they enjoy running the ball more than passing, but at the end of the day, I’m here to do my job at the highest level no matter what they call.”