NFL Rumors: 3 NFC teams that need WR John Brown
Free agent wide receiver John Brown has something that all teams in the NFL covet, and that is speed. Hall of Fame coach (and the person that the revered Madden video game franchise is named after) John Madden was often quoted as saying that "speed kills."
Players in the NFL today such as Tyreek Hill, Henry Ruggs III and John Ross are each known as speedsters that can stretch the defense for their respective teams. Perhaps this is why it's such a surprise that John Brown continues to remain a free agent receiver looking for employment.
Legend has it that once upon a time, Brown ran a 4.30 40-yard dash while in college at Pittsburgh State. Here is proof that this isn't just a myth.
With Brown's skills as a runner and a need for speed at the receiver position in the league, let's take a look at three NFC teams that could use his services.
3 NFC teams that could use free agent wide receiver John Brown
#1 - Chicago Bears
The Chicago Bears are currently overhauling their offense to fit the needs of their newly appointed starter rookie quarterback Justin Fields.
With receiver Allen Robinson possibly setting his sights on leaving for greener pastures in 2022, Fields could use more speedsters to compliment his scrambling ability.
#2 - New York Giants
In Week 5, the Giants took on the Dallas Cowboys and suffered injuries to their franchise quarterback and running back in Daniel Jones and Saquon Barkley (respectively). However, they also lost newly signed receiver Kenny Golladay, who hyperextended his knee in the first quarter and did not return to the game.
The Giants were already without starting receivers Sterling Shepard and Darius Slayton. By signing John Brown, the Giants could add a proven receiver with speed and one that can help fill the void of injured receivers on their roster.
#3 - San Francisco 49ers
The San Francisco 49ers are also in a phase of rebuilding with rookie quarterback Trey Lance. Lance got the start because of a calf injury to starter Jimmy Garoppolo. However, many believe that Lance may keep the job as he was the third overall pick in the 2021 NFL Draft.
If this is the case, Lance could definitely use more speed on the outside to stretch defenses, which will also give him running lanes to showcase his dynamic scrambling ability. The addition of John Brown would be one step closer to opening up 49ers head coach Kyle Shanahan's already potent offensive scheme.
NFL Combine Was a Perfect Showcase for Draft's Super Sleeper WR John Brown
John Brown needed a huge combine performance to emerge from relative obscurity as a receiver with a common name from the otherPittsburgh with a different spelling.
He did just that.
Link to Media
Out of Pittsburg State—no "h"—in Kansas, the 5'10'', 179-pound receiver caught the attention of NFL general managers, scouts and head coaches with an exceptionally athletic showing during the on-field workouts in Indianapolis on Sunday morning.
Oregon State's Brandin Cooks' 4.33 in the 40-yard dash was the only faster time than Browns' 4.34 in the famed event at the wideout position.
Both had blistering 10-yard splits of 1.50. For perspective, Sammy Watkins ran an official 4.43 with a 1.53 10-yard split.
Let's get to know Brown, the Gorilla star.
Who is John Brown?
During the 2012 season, the Homestead, Fla., native led Pitt State with 63 receptions for 973 yards and eight touchdowns.
He also returned 28 punts and finished with a 15.4-yard average and a score.
But that wasn't his first huge collegiate season—Brown was even better in 2011.
As a sophomore, he snagged 61 passes for 1,216 yards with 12 receiving touchdowns. Brown averaged 13.7 yards per return and took three kicks to the house.
In 2013, he hit the 61-catch mark again for 1,198 yards with 14 more scores as a wideout.
To put it succinctly, Brown was incredibly productive at the Division II level.
Link to Media
The Gorillas play in the Mid-American Intercollegiate Athletic Association, the same conference as Lindenwood University, the school future NFL cornerback Pierre Desir attended.
Pittsburg State rolled Lindenwood 41-6 in 2013, and Brown caught three passes for 91 yards and a touchdown.
In a 44-33 loss to Desir's college the previous year, Brown made five catches for 86 yards and a score.
One of the knocks on Brown, beside the level of competition he played at Pitt State, may be his 8.5-inch hands, the second smallest among all wide receivers at the combine.
In 2013, only Georgia's Marlon Brown, Syracuse's Alec Lemon and Texas A&M's Ryan Swope had smaller hands than Brown.
However, Swope was drafted in the sixth round by the Arizona Cardinals, and though Brown went undrafted, he caught seven touchdowns as a rookie for the Baltimore Ravens.
Also, T.Y. Hilton's hands were 8.5-inches at the 2012 combine. While he didn't run the 40 inside Lucas Oil Stadium that year, he sprinted for a time of 4.34 at the Florida International Pro Day, per Anthony Cosenza of the Cincy Jungle.
Frankly, NFL teams could see Brown as a Hilton-esque prospect.
Smaller stature and hands. Less than ideal level of competition. Impressive production.
While he may not be selected in the third round like Hilton was, with a super fast 40 at the combine, John Brown did very well for himself and his draft stock.
NFL's Fastest Man? Falcons Try Out Veteran WR John Brown
The Atlanta Falcons brought in veteran wide receiver John Brown (5'11 and 178 pounds) for a workout on Tuesday per multiple reports.
The 31-year old Brown has a pair of 1,000-yard receiving seasons on his resume, most recently in 2019 with the Buffalo Bills.
READ MORE: Should the Falcons use more Wide Receivers?
He was released by the Bills in March of this year and signed by the Las Vegas Raiders to a one-year deal for $3.75 million, but he was a final roster cut on August 31.
One of the fastest men in the NFL, Brown posted a 4.34 forty at the 2014 NFL Combine after a productive career at Pittsburgh State.
The Arizona Cardinals selected him in the third round of the 2014 NFL Draft, and he made an immediate impact as a rookie with 48 catches for 696 yards and five touchdowns.
Brown followed that season up with 65 catches for 1,003 yards and seven touchdowns.
He signed a one-year deal with the Baltimore Ravens in 2018 before getting a three-year $27 million contact with the Bills the next season.
Falcons receiver Russell Gage isn't 100% healthy, and the Falcons lack depth at the receiver position.
If Brown were to be added to the squad, he would add an element of speed that the Falcons lack.
READ MORE: Falcons Sign P Dustin Colquitt
The Falcons also signed punter Dustin Colquitt to the practice squad on Tuesday. The two-time Pro Bowler could be called upon against the New York Giants on Sunday after Cameron Nizialek has struggled the first two games of the season.
John Brown (wide receiver)
American football player
John Brown (born April 3, 1990), nicknamed "Smokey" or "Smoke," is an American footballwide receiver for the Denver Broncos of the National Football League (NFL). He played college football at Pittsburg State and was drafted by the Arizona Cardinals in the third round of the 2014 NFL Draft. He played for the Baltimore Ravens in 2018 and Buffalo Bills from 2019 to 2020.
High school career
A native of Homestead, Florida, Brown attended Homestead High School, where he played high school football. He was named an All-Dade County selection as a senior in 2007.
In 2008, Brown enrolled at Mars Hill College in Mars Hill, North Carolina. Brown was named the SAC Freshman of the Year, after catching 27 passes for 619 yards and seven touchdowns while leading the team with 1,472 all-purpose yards. Due to academic troubles, he sat out the 2009 season before transferring to Coffeyville Community College in 2010, but he was redshirted.
Unable to play at Coffeyville, Brown considered a transfer to MidAmerica Nazarene University, where his half-brother James Walker had played. Before Brown and Walker could play together, however, Walker was shot multiple times in July 2010 and died in April 2011 from his injuries. Walker's ailing condition and eventual demise motivated Brown to keep playing football despite his past hardships, and he eventually earned a scholarship to play for Pittsburg State University.
In 2011, he was a second-team APLittle All-American as all-purpose player while leading Pittsburg State to the NCAA Division II National Championship. He was named first-team All-MIAA as kick returner and second-team All-MIAA as a wide receiver after he led his team with 61 receptions for 1,216 yards and 12 touchdowns. In 2012, he was named a first-team AP Little All-American as an all-purpose player, and first-team All-MIAA as kick returner and wide receiver. He was named the MIAA and the NCAA Division II National Special Teams Player of the Year. Brown started 10 games and led team with 63 receptions for 973 yards and eight touchdowns. In 2013, he was named 2013 MIAA Special Teams Player of the Year as well as the NCAA Division II National Special Teams Player of the Year. He was also named a second-team AP Little All-American as all-purpose player and first-team All-MIAA player as kick returner and wide receiver. He caught 61 passes for 1,198 yards and 14 touchdowns.
He finished as Pitt State’s all-time leader in receptions (185), receiving yards (3,380) and receiving touchdowns (34). His 3,380 receiving yards ranks fifth in MIAA history. Between receiving, rushing and return yards, Brown finished his career with 7,716 all-purpose yards, 6,244 at Pitt State.
Brown was drafted by the Arizona Cardinals in the third round (91st overall) of the 2014 NFL Draft. Brown was the first Pittsburg State Gorilla drafted since Ronald Moore in 1993.
In his debut for the Arizona Cardinals, Brown caught his first professional touchdown on a 13-yard pass from Carson Palmer against the San Diego Chargers in Week 1 of the 2014 season. He followed that performance with his first multi-touchdown game two weeks later against the San Francisco 49ers. On October 26, 2014, he caught a 75-yard game-winning touchdown pass to beat the Philadelphia Eagles. In Week 10 of the 2014 NFL season, John Brown became the first rookie in NFL history to have four-game-winning touchdowns in a season. Brown finished the season with 48 receptions on 103 targets for 696 yards and five touchdowns. An injury to the Cardinal's QB, Carson Palmer, caused a sharp decline in the team's offense. On January 3, 2015, in the NFC Wild Card game against the Carolina Panthers, on the game's final offensive play, Brown was the final recipient of a multiple lateral play which lost 20 yards. The loss caused the Cardinals to finish the game with just 78 total offensive yards, the lowest total in NFL playoff history which broke a 56-year-old league record.
Brown and the Cardinals enjoyed a terrific season, finishing the regular season at 13–3. Brown concluded the regular season with 65 receptions on 101 targets for 1,003 yards and seven touchdowns. The Cardinals ultimately lost in the NFC Championship game to the Carolina Panthers.
Plagued with hamstring issues throughout the season, Brown posted 39 receptions on 72 targets for 517 yards and two touchdowns in 2016.
Brown's 2017 season was also plagued with injuries, dealing with quadriceps, back, and toe injuries. He played in 10 games with five starts, recording 21 catches for 299 yards and three touchdowns.
On March 13, 2018, Brown signed a one-year, $5 million contract with the Baltimore Ravens.
After scoring his first Ravens touchdown in the season-opener against the Buffalo Bills, he would go on to record 92 yards and his second touchdown (a 21-yard reception) against the Cincinnati Bengals the next game. In Week 4, against the Pittsburgh Steelers, he recorded three receptions for 116 yards and a touchdown in the victory. He finished the season with 42 receptions for a team-leading 715 yards and five touchdowns.
On March 13, 2019, Brown signed a three-year, $27 million contract with the Buffalo Bills.
During the season opener against the New York Jets on September 8, 2019, Brown finished with seven receptions for 123 yards, including the go-ahead 38-yard touchdown reception in a 17–16 win after trailing 16–0. In a Week 7 matchup against the Miami Dolphins, Brown caught a go-ahead touchdown from Josh Allen in the fourth quarter, giving Buffalo a 17–14 lead. The Bills would go on to win 31–21 as Brown caught five passes for 83 yards and the touchdown. During the rematch with the Dolphins in Week 11, Brown finished with 137 receiving yards and two touchdowns as the Bills won 37–20. During the Thanksgiving Series against the Dallas Cowboys in Week 13, Brown completed one pass for a 28 yard touchdown to rookie running back Devin Singletary. Brown also finished with 26 receiving yards himself as the Bills won 26–15. During a 17–10 Week 15 win over the Pittsburgh Steelers, Brown helped the Bills to victory with seven catches for 99 yards, as the Bills clinched a playoff berth for the second time in three seasons. In Week 16 against the New England Patriots, Brown caught one pass for a 53-yard touchdown during the 24–17 loss. Brown's touchdown reception was the first one allowed by All-Pro cornerback Stephon Gilmore all season. Overall, he finished the 2019 season with 72 receptions for 1,060 receiving yards and six receiving touchdowns.
In the AFC Wild Card game against the Houston Texans, Brown caught four passes for 50 yards and threw a 16-yard touchdown pass to Josh Allen during the 22–19 overtime loss.
In a season opening 27–17 victory over the New York Jets, Brown was targeted ten times, catching six passes for 70 yards and a touchdown. In his third game of the year, Brown suffered an injury to his calf. In Week 10, Brown suffered a high ankle sprain and was placed on injured reserve on November 28, 2020. He was activated from injured reserve and subsequently placed on the reserve/COVID-19 list by the team on December 28, 2020. He was activated from the COVID list four days later. He played in Buffalo's season finale against the Dolphins, catching four passes for 72 yards a one touchdown in Buffalo's 56–26 win. Overall, Brown finished the 2020 season with 33 receptions for 458 receiving yards and three receiving touchdowns.
In the Divisional Round of the playoffs, Brown received eight receptions for a total of 62 yards in the 17–3 victory over the Baltimore Ravens.
On March 10, 2021, Brown was released by the Bills.
Las Vegas Raiders
On March 19, 2021, Brown signed a one-year contract with the Las Vegas Raiders. He was released on August 31, 2021.
On October 12, 2021, the Denver Broncos signed Brown to their practice squad.
NFL career statistics
All of Brown's family and friends refer to him by his nickname, Smokey. The name was bestowed upon him at birth by the boyfriend of his grandmother. “She nicknamed me Smokey because when I first came out, I was blacker than what I am now,” Brown said, referring to his skin color. “Most people are like, ‘Why they call you Smokey? Because you are fast?’ But no.” 
Brown was diagnosed with sickle cell trait in 2016 after suffering from soreness in his hamstrings. He insisted a cyst on his spine that he had treated during the 2016 season was the root cause of his leg issues, and that the sickle cell trait will not affect his football career.
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- ^"Las Vegas Raiders sign WR John Brown". Raiders.com. March 19, 2021. Retrieved March 19, 2021.
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Combine john brown
Zybek PD3X AKA "Official"
40 Yard Dash (ET): 4.34
40 Yard Dash (HH): 4.34
20 Yard (ET): 2.55
20 Yard (HH): 2.46
10 Yard (ET): 1.56
10 Yard (HH): 1.57
Vertical Jump: 36 1/2
Broad Jump: 09'11"
20 Yrd Shuttle: 4.12
3-Cone Drill: 6.91
Hand: 8 1/2 Arm: 30 1/2
Wingspan: 72 5/8
40 Yrd Dash:
20 Yrd Dash:
10 Yrd Dash:
20 Yrd Shuttle:
Pos drills only
The Arizona Cardinals made a bit of a surprise selection with their second third round draft pick when they took Pittsburg State receiver John Brown. He was less heralded than several other receivers that were on the board, such as Bruce Ellington, who was a Cardinals fan favorite.
However, head coach Bruce Arians was looking to get a receiver in the same mold as T.Y. Hilton, who was quite productive as a rookie under Arians in 2012 and continued to improve his production in his second year.
In Brown, the Cardinals got a guy who is almost a clone of Hilton -- in almost every measurable. In fact, Brown is a little bit better in almost all of them. He's a little taller, a little leaner, a little stronger and a little faster.
Take a look:
Combine 40-yard dash
Hilton, in his first year, caught 50 passes for over 800 yards and seven touchdowns. Is this what we can expect from Brown? Since his measurables are a little bit better than Hilton's, can we perhaps hope for a little more production than the good numbers Hilton has put up?
In This Stream
2014 NFL Draft coverageView all 44 stories Sours: https://www.revengeofthebirds.com/2014/5/13/5714214/2014-nfl-draft-results-comparing-wr-john-brown-and-t-y-hilton
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