Former Wilde Lake star running back Zach Brown is expected to be drafted in the second or third round of the NFL draft this week, according to draft experts.
CBS’s Pat Kirwan and NFL Network’s Charley Casserly predicted Brown would be selected in the second round, 46th overall, by the Philadelphia Eagles. Mel Kiper Jr., ESPN’s draft expert, told the Baltimore Sun he also expects Brown to go in the second round. But Russ Lande, from Sporting News, predicted Brown at 75th overall in the third round to the Houston Texans.
Brown is considered one of the most athletic linebackers in the class, according to NFL.com. At the draft combine, Brown ran a 4.5 second 40-yard-dash, tying him for the fastest-ever 40 ran by an inside linebacker at the combine.
Multiple NFL teams have taken an interest in the speedy inside linebacker. He recently visited the Bears, Jets, Titans and Lions and staged workouts for the Patriots and Ravens, according to NFL.com.
Brown racked up 105 tackles, three interceptions and 5.5 sacks while starting all 13 games in 2011 during his senior year at North Carolina. At Wilde Lake he was a multisport star. During his senior year in high school he was a linebacker and running back rushing for 1,537 yards and 20 touchdowns; as a track sprinter, he won the Maryland state championship in the 100- and 200-meter dash, and as a wrestler, he went 29-0.
One month ago, many draft experts had Brown being selected in the first round, but he has slipped after draft experts began to question his work ethic and instincts, according to the Sun.
Despite that, no one has questioned his competitiveness. In high school, he reportedly once ripped off the shoes of a wrestling opponent nicknamed the “Beast of the East.” And his former high school coach, Doug Duvall, said Brown is so athletic he could have been an Olympic decathlete, if, of course, football doesn’t work out.
NFL Draft Schedule:
- First Round: Thursday, April 26, 8 p.m. - 11:30 p.m., ESPN
- Second and Third Rounds: Friday, April 27, 7 p.m. - 11:30 p.m. ESPN
- Rounds 4-7: Saturday, April 28, Noon - 8 p.m. ESPN