Tennessee Titans A.J. Brown can be the NFL’s greatest wide receiver
By Brady Akins
A.J. Brown’s numbers are impressive, but as we just explored, the stat sheets don’t tell the full story of his greatness. With volume on his side, Brown could easily be one of the most statistically dominant players in the NFL.
Time and again, Brown puts together game-by-game highlight reels that showcase his strength as a wide receiver. Not the absolute best at one particular aspect of the game, but one of the best at every aspect of the game.
Brown wasn’t viewed as an incomplete prospect coming out of college– but he wasn’t seen as a sure bet either, not by any stretch. From the NFL.com’s own Lance Zierlien’s draft profile of the Titans’ star, he was seen as a quality Day One player, but one with a few areas that would need improving.
“Appears more quick than fast”
Brown’s NFL combine performance left some question marks surrounding his ability to take advantage of professional defenses. A 4.49-second 40-yard dash isn’t slow but isn’t near the mark you would expect from a player sometimes used as a deep threat in the Tennessee offense.
But Brown’s in-game speed has given the impression that his official 40-time was more of a fluke than anything else. The Titans’ receiver is quick for sure, but he also has the straight-line speed to outright just about anyone on the field.
“Needs to prove he can work downfield against NFL speed”
On highlights and TV broadcasts, Brown’s ‘faster than 4.5’ speed shows up often after the catch, where the sleeper superstar is more than capable of catching a short pass over the middle and turning it into 70-yard touchdown gold. But, can he use that speed to get open before the catch against NFL defensive backs?
Of course, the broadcast version of the highlight isn’t the most flattering angle. But by the time the ball reaches Brown’s hands, he’s exactly where he needs to be to haul it in. He’s able to create just enough of a step on the defender to gain separation and earn a tough catch.
“Drops appear when focus declines”
When the ball gets anywhere near Brown’s area– he’s bringing it in. Thems just the rules, I don’t make them.
He’s done it in the playoffs, he’s done it against division rivals. And maybe drops do appear when his focus declines, but Brown is constantly locked in on 50/50 balls. His ball tracking skills are already some of the best in the league. And it’s just one part of Brown’s unrivaled game, and one of the many things that’s going to soon make him one of the best receivers in the league.