Australian Daniel Faalele may only be weeks into his NFL career, but he’s already making an impression with the Baltimore Ravens.
The 22-year-old Melbourne native was selected with a fourth-round pick in last month’s draft and is set to gain minutes as a rookie, with his coaches impressed with the 174kg star.
“The guy is big. He can move,” Ravens coach John Harbaugh said. “He has good feet. I was watching the tape earlier. He moves his feet really well, and yet he has so much to learn.
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“He has to go to work every day to improve, but I expect him to play football for us this year.”
Faalele’s size and commanding skills have earned him comparisons to former Ravens star Orlando Brown Jr, a three-time Pro Bowl selection.
“It’s the natural comparison, isn’t it? They’re both huge men,” Ravens director of player personnel Joe Hortiz said.
“You’re definitely thinking Orlando. Orlando is probably a bit more… well, he played left tackle, No. 1, but probably a bit more physical as an outgoing run blocker, where Faalele was probably a bit more polite and consistent in pro pass (protection), in terms of patient play.
“Orlando would get a bit aggressive coming out, as you remember. But yeah, that’s the natural comparison between the two men.”
It’s a comparison that Faalele sees himself too.
“I feel like I’m fair with the size comparison,” he said.
“One day I would like to play like him. His football intelligence is really good and he uses his strengths to his advantage. I feel like Coach ‘D’ (Ravens offensive line coach, Joe D’Alessandris) helped him develop those things, and I feel like I’m in good hands.”
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