The move recognises the pair's great form over the past couple of seasons, as well as their influence over the group.
As with most clubs, the playing group had a heavy influence over who was selected, however at the Crows, the process was slightly different.
The playing group decided what trademarks they wanted their leaders to show and which players embodied those trademarks best.
The result was just reward for Keays and O'Brien, with both players having earned the respect of their teammates and the wider competition.
As for Keays, the move caps a remarkable career turnaround. Being delisted after 30 games with Brisbane, he was rookie drafted by the Crows at the end of 2019.
Since then, he has gone from strength to strength, capping off a fantastic 2021 season by finishing second in the club's Best & Fairest award. Coach Matthew Nicks was bullish about the young leaders at the developing Crows.
"We are blessed at this footy club to have a number of leaders within our playing group and the addition of both Reilly and Ben to the leadership group reflects the growth of our young team and the exciting direction we are heading," Nicks said.
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“Importantly for us, they prioritise others but they also lead by example on game day, by the elite standards they set at training and by a commitment to make others around them better.
“Both bring their own unique style to complement the leaders we already have and who are continuing in their roles – Brodie, Tom and our captain Rory who have all done a fantastic job with our young group in recent seasons.”
Following a 2021 season that showed plenty of promise, the Crows are optimistic heading in 2022.