Prospects

Prospects
Photo of Cody Brown
Cody Brown (DE)
Height: 6'2"
Weight: 244
College: Connecticut
Conference: AAC
Hometown: Coral Springs, FL
High School: Coral Springs
Featured Prospects
Selected by: Arizona Cardinals
Round: 2
Pick (Overall): 31 (63)
Discuss
Pick Analysis: The Cardinals add an intriguing edge rusher with Brown. The All-Big East selection has exceptional athleticism and is a credible pass-rushing threat off the corner. Though he lacks ideal size, his intriguing movement skills are ideally suited for the outside linebacker position in the Cardinals' 3-4 defense.
  1. Overview
  2. Analysis
Overview

The three-year starter at right defensive end, Brown's blitzing skills and range dropping back in pass coverage could see him shift to outside linebacker in the National Football League. Huskies coach Randy Edsall felt Brown responded remarkably to his tough love approach, emerging as one of the elite pass rushers in the collegiate game.


As a senior, Brown discovered what consistency can do. "He's played very, very well," Edsall said. "He's played up to the level of my expectations now."


It is rare for Edsall to say one of his Huskies is playing up to expectations. In the past, he has only said such things about the likes of linebacker Alfred Fincher and quarterback Dan Orlovsky. Part of that is simple coaching philosophy, a desire to ride the best players to get the best out of them. Brown produced his best season in 2008, so Edsall could drop some plaudits on him. It would almost be impossible not to do so. His coach also noted that Brown has dominated like no defensive player in recent memory. He did it the way rush end Uyi Osunde did it back in Edsall's early days with the UConn program.


As a testimony to his coach's praise and faith in him, the team's Defensive Most Valuable Player in 2008 guided a unit that had a great turnaround from the previous season. The Huskies finished Brown's final campaign ranked sixth in the nation in total offense, allowing just 278.0 yards per game compared to 351.38 yards in 2007 (ranked 37th in the NCAA). His stellar performance in the trenches resulted in the front wall giving up only 109.77 yards per game rushing (second in the Big East/16th in the NCAA), compared to its 62nd national ranking in 2007 (157.38 ypg).


Brown served as team captain during his senior year at Coral Springs High School. He was named first-team All-Broward County and All-State honorable mention, adding Miami Herald Sweet Sixteen recognition. He helped the team to the district playoffs, recording 88 tackles with nine sacks in 2004. He was selected to play in the BCAA All-Star Classic and the Dade-Broward All-Star Game. In addition to football, he earned two letters in basketball, picking up All-Broward County honors.


Brown enrolled at Connecticut as a 215-pound defensive end in 2005. He appeared in the team's first 10 games, playing behind senior Shawn Mayne on the left side, where he earned one starting assignment vs. Cincinnati. He finished his first season with 20 tackles (10 solos) that included one sack and five stops for loss.


Brown emerged from 2006 fall camp as the Huskies' starting right defensive end, but in the sixth game he broke a bone in his arm vs. Army, missing the second half of the season. The 233-pound defender managed to register 24 tackles (8 solos), as he led the team with 4.5 sacks and also made 7.5 stops behind the line of scrimmage.


During his rehabilitation from his arm injury, Brown added 15 pounds of muscle to his frame, returning to start all 13 games at right end in 2007. He led the team with 16.5 stops for loss, the sixth-best season total in school history. He also paced the Huskies with 7.5 sacks and collected 50 tackles (35 solos) with three pass deflections.


Brown continued his progression to the elite ranks in college football as a senior. The unanimous All-Big East Conference first-team pick was named the team's Defensive Most Valuable Player. He led the team with a career-high 11 sacks and matched his 2007 figures with 16.5 tackles for loss, both good for second place on the conference chart. He also delivered 56 tackles (33 solos) and tied for eighth in the NCAA with a school single-season record-tying five forced fumbles. His eight pass deflection were the second-highest total of any defensive end in the major college circuit.


High School

Attended Coral Spring (Fla.) High School, serving as team captain during his senior year...


Named first-team All-Broward County and All-State honorable mention, adding Miami Herald Sweet Sixteen recognition...Helped the team to the district playoffs, recording 88 tackles with nine sacks in 2004...Selected to play in the BCAA All-Star Classic and the Dade-Broward All-Star Game...Earned two letters in basket-ball, picking up All-Broward County honors.


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Analysis

Positives: Excellent athlete. Uses his hands to rip off blocks from much bigger tackles. Very good off the edge. Able to get into the chest of his man to bull rush him into the quarterback. Will close on quarterbacks quickly and secure the tackle. Plays on the strong and weak sides, as well as a stand-up rusher at times. Shows potential to be an effective 3-4 rush linebacker. Should be an asset on special teams coverage units. Recognizes misdirection quickly. Helped himself with a strong performance throughout Senior Bowl week.


Negatives: Lacks great bulk to hold up as an every-down end, and will likely switch to 3-4 rush linebacker in the pros. Can get moved out of the hole. A bit high and choppy in his backpedal, but he can get deep on zone blitzes. Needs to hustle and chase a bit more when plays are downfield or down the line. Quarterbacks and ballcarriers can sidestep him as he closes because he doesn't break down quickly enough to make the tackle.


Compares To: KAMERION WIMBLEY, Cleveland -- Brown is an undersized defensive end who will need some time to adjust to playing linebacker. He might bring quicker value as a situational rush end, as he is not really fluid in his pass drops and might struggle in pass coverage. He is more of a drag-down tackler than a wrap-up type working in space, causing some of the slippery runners to escape. However, he is a solid hitter vs. plays in front of him and shows enough spin in his lateral movements to make plays outside the box. He has good acceleration working down the line and does a good job of colliding with the ball carrier on contact. When he gets too high in his stance, he tends to pick a side rather than squaring up, making him an easy target to block.


Injury Report

2005: Sat out the season finale vs. Louisville (undisclosed injury).


2006: Suffered a broken arm vs. Army (10/14), missing the final six games.


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