Ji'Ayir Brown Complete NFL Draft Profile (Playmaking Safety Has Foundation to Develop Into NFL Starter)
By Larry Rupp
Penn State safety Ji'Ayir Brown is eligible for the 2023 NFL Draft following a standout college career. A third-team All-Big Ten player, Brown served as a leader on a dominant defense and provided a couple insane interceptions as well. He could hear his name called as early as the third round in April.
Here's everything you need to know about Ji'Ayir Brown heading into the 2023 NFL Draft.
Ji'Ayir Brown Draft Stock & Mock Draft Projections
New York Jets
New Orleans Saints
Pro Football Network
New Orleans Saints
Mock draft sources accurate as of 4/23: Walter Football, Sporting News, CBS Sports, Pro Football Network, ESPN.
Projected Draft Round: Round 3 (3), Round 4 (1), Round 5 (1)
Projected Team: Saints (2), Jets (1), Commanders (1), Eagles (1)
Ji'Ayir Brown Scouting Report
Brown started his collegiate career at Lackawanna college, a Division II program where he garnered All-American honors in his sophomore year. He then gained attention from the Penn State coaching staff and racked up 6 total tackles (1.0 for loss) and 1 pass breakup as a reserve player in 2020.
The New Jersey native broke out in 2021 with 73 total tackles (1.0 for loss), 5 pass breakups and 6 interceptions across 13 games. Brown followed up that season by tallying 74 total tackles (7.0 for loss), 3 pass breakups and 4 interceptions in 2022. He was named Defensive MVP of the Rose Bowl.
Highlighted strengths of Brown's game focus on his ability to make an impact in both rush and pass defense. He flashes quick reflexes that allow him to meet opposing running backs head on as well as great hands that provide him with a chance to log interceptions on even highly contested footballs.
Brown is far from a perfect prospect, though, as his reliance on landing massive hits also leaves him susceptible to missing tackles. His coverage skills on deep routes also need to improve to shine at the NFL level. Nevertheless, Brown's production shows that he can step up in tough environments.
Ji'Ayir Brown NFL Draft Prediction
It's not often that a college safety logs over 70 tackles and at least 4 interceptions in a single season, yet Brown did it twice. That is not something to be taken lightly as he could be a contributor right away. It'd be better to see him land on a rebuilding squad that is willing to work through the kinks.
That makes the Saints line up as a logical landing spot. New Orleans may not be in full rebuilding mode, but it is a defensive-minded team that has regularly developed safety talent in the past. Brown is someone capable of winning the nickelback spot and developing into a legitimate starting option.
Learning from the likes of Tyrann Mathieu and Marcus Maye would be a great opportunity for Brown adjust to the NFL level, too. The depth behind those two starters isn't substantial, anyways. Analysts expect Brown to be mid-round pick, which lines up perfectly with New Orleans' third-round spot.
Prediction: New Orleans Saints (Round 3, 71 overall)
Check out more NFL Draft content from The Duel:
Ji'Ayir Brown NFL Combine Results
Ji'Ayir Brown Penn State Stats
Tackles For Loss
Ji'Ayir Brown Penn State Highlights
Larry Rupp is not a FanDuel employee. In addition to providing DFS gameplay advice, Larry Rupp also participates in DFS contests on FanDuel using his personal account, username phillyfan424. While the strategies and player selections recommended in his articles are his personal views, he may deploy different strategies and player selections when entering contests with his personal account. The views expressed in their articles are the author's alone and do not necessarily reflect the views of FanDuel.