Former Penn and All-Ivy linebacker Brandon Copeland signed with the Baltimore Ravens on Wednesday to their practice squad.
Copeland, a 2013 Wharton graduate and captain of the Quakers’ 2012 Ivy League title team, grew up and played his high school ball in Sykesville, Md., just 20 miles away from Baltimore.
The 31-year-old enters a Baltimore roster where his role will be to provide depth at inside and outside linebacker following starting outside linebacker Steven Means suffering a season-ending torn achilles on Sunday against the Miami Dolphins.
“He’s one that sort of got away. I’ve always had to watch him play for other teams,” Ravens head coach John Harbaugh said of Copeland during a recent press conference. “He plays so hard, such a physical guy, and to have a chance to bring him back now and hopefully give him a chance to work his way back in there is really good to see.”
Harbaugh also had an interesting compliment for Copeland’s football intelligence, comparing him to an elephant after not forgetting a certain footwork on a punt protection drill.
Copeland originally signed with the Ravens as an undrafted free agent in 2013, but was waived on the final day of roster cuts. After pit stops with the Tennessee Titans and Detroit Lions, he received his first major opportunity with the New York Jets during the 2018 season, starting 10 out of the team’s 16 games and recording 35 combined tackles and a career-high five sacks.
Two years later, the linebacker suffered a torn pectoral injury with the New England Patriots, and most recently played for the Atlanta Falcons in the 2021 season, where he notched 39 total tackles, two passes defended, and two quarterback hits on defense and special teams.
During the 2021 and 2022 spring semesters, Copeland returned to Penn to co-teach a class called “Urban Financial Literacy: Pedagogy and Practice,” a seminar concerning topics such as budgeting, planning for retirement, building credit, and understanding financial inequities.
The Wharton graduate also appeared recently on a new “Shark Tank”-like reality series, "Buy My House," which debuted on Sept. 2 on Netflix and features Copeland and three other investors sitting in plush chairs and vying for a seller’s piece of real estate.
The Ravens will be in Foxborough, Mass. this Sunday to take on the Patriots. Whether or not Copeland will be called up to the active roster and see any playing time remains to be seen.