Former Oklahoma offensive guard Ben Powers wasn’t the only lineman at his draft party whooping and hollering when the Baltimore Ravens took him in the fourth round Saturday. Powers invited one of his past Sooners teammates, Ravens right tackle Orlando Brown, to the event before he had an inkling about the impending reunion Baltimore.
Brown, a third-round selection in 2018, erupted when his NFL team selected his college buddy.
“He was yelling more than I was,” Powers said in a conference call with Baltimore-area reporters Saturday.
Brown then hopped on the phone to explain: “I don’t have a lot of best friends, and he’s one of my best friends. And to have him with me in Baltimore — it’s something that we’ve talked about playing together for a long time.”
The Ravens didn’t draft Powers because of his relationship with their starting right tackle, though. They scooped him up because Powers impressed their evaluators with his play and personality and because they to wanted to upgrade the interior of an offensive line that showed cracks down the stretch of last season.
In a wildcard round playoff loss in January, the Ravens struggled to block Los Angeles’ talented pass rushers, particularly when they lined up over center or left guard. Quarterback Lamar Jackson went down for a season-high seven sacks, and Baltimore’s running game failed to gain a semblance of a rhythm.
The Ravens wouldn’t have drafted Powers if they didn’t think he could offer much-needed reinforcements.
Powers is “a very intelligent, smart, tough, aggressive player,” general manager Eric DeCosta said. “He fits our mentality.”