Beau Brade makes ESPN’s top 50 prospects for 2024 NFL Draft

Maryland has had at least one player selected in the last six NFL Drafts and all but two of the last 29, along with five defensive backs drafted since 2019. Maryland will likely add another defensive back to that list next April as safety Beau Brade carries his preseason draft buzz into November, and on Thursday, he was the lone Terp to make ESPN’s top 50 prospects for the 2024 NFL Draft.

Beau Brade checked in at 43rd in the list.

Among the most improved safeties in the country, Brade brings the hammer as a hitter despite average size at the position. He closes on the ball with power and tenacity, and he has been better in coverage this season, too. Offenses are tending to avoid his area of the field, as he has allowed 65 yards on seven receptions (15 targets) this season while shoring up his tackling ability. Brade is more of a strong safety, but his improvements in coverage are pushing him up the board. 

Brade enters the weekend leading Maryland’s defense in tackles (47) and is one of five players with at least one interception this season, while he’s added 2.5 tackles for loss. Brade leading the defense in tackles is a familiar sight for Terp fans after leading the defense in the same category last season. One season after recording 15 tackles against SMU, Brade’s ten tackles against Michigan State remains a season-high while he’s led the Terps in tackles in all but two games he’s been available this season.

Brade opened the season as the second-best draft eligible strong safety in Phil Steele’s preseason preview, along with being named one of ten under-the-radar draft prospects by On3 back in July. Despite playing under a different position coach each season, the former River Hill product rotated along the backline behind Jordan Mosley his first two seasons before taking over as the starter in 2022, starting every game he’s been available.

Brade didn’t make the jump to a full-time starter by himself as he and Dante Trader Jr. have grown, both on and off the field, to become the new faces of the secondary.

“We’re almost the same person,” Brade said of his relationship with Trader back in August. “We have the same goals in life. The way we go about, we carry ourselves very similar and our work ethic. That makes the bonding stronger. He’s going to be my roommate this upcoming season and then we’re business partners. We’re with each other every day and that’s really why our bond is so strong.”

“They can shed their light and their knowledge on those guys tenfold and they don’t have a problem doing it. They’re good players, they’re good people and they believe in what we’re doing,” Williams said. “The speed of the pack is determined by the speed of the leaders.”

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