Saying John Brown is always open isn’t really hyperbole.
Anyone who has watched the receiver since the Arizona Cardinals selected him in the third round of the 2014 Draft has seen him seemingly run free all over the field. It happened in minicamps and OTAs, has been happening in training camp and then happened again Saturday in the preseason opener against the Houston Texans.
Brown finished the game with five catches for 87 yards. He was targeted a team-best 10 times, and would likely have scored at least one touchdown had it not been for some errant throws.
“He probably should have had a 200-yard game in the first half,” Cardinals coach Bruce Arians told Bickley and Marotta on Arizona Sports 98.7 FM Monday. “We underthrew him, he gets a pass interference penalty (and) we missed him one more time down the sideline. He had an easy shot at 200 yards. We’re excited about the guy.”
You don’t say.
The 5-foot-11, 179-pound receiver from Pittsburg State has been nothing short of impressive during his brief time in the NFL, and Saturday’s effort only furthered the notion that he could very well be a star in Arizona’s offense.
Teamed up with Larry Fitzgerald, Michael Floyd, Ted Ginn, Jr. and a bevy of capable tight ends, and he may also quickly become a terror for opposing defenses who are forced to pick their poison.
“He’s still got to earn his spurs, but he’s earning them real fast,” Arians said. “Sliding him up, getting him into the right spots. Not over-cooking him mentally, so he slows down. Just let him play the positions.”
Arians said Brown really enjoys playing in the slot receiver position, but will now start to get more work outside as a wide receiver, backing up Fitzgerald’s position with the second team.
With Ginn, Jr. and Floyd both sidelined with injuries, it opens the door for Brown to practice at unfamiliar spots. The more he is able to do, the more dangerous he’ll be.
“Ted being out this week is going to give him a great opportunity in our three-wide package to play the backside receiver,” the coach said.