That’s a good stretch you’re getting in there helmet. Well done.
One of the biggest surprises from week one of the NFL preseason was the outstanding performance of Arizona Cardinals rookie wide receiver John Brown. Throughout their dominant preseason victory over the Houston Texans, Brown continuously ran circles around defenders on his way to an impressive 5 catch, 87 yard performance. Even more astounding was the fact that he likely would have had a touchdown catch as well, if not for Arizona’s untimely quarterback inaccuracy. Nonetheless, it was quite the rookie debut for an overlooked and largely unknown receiver, who could make a huge impact as a late-round steal in your fantasy football league.
Drafted in the third-round of the 2014 NFL Draft from Pittsburg State, Brown was relatively overlooked as a pre-draft prospect. Yet, throughout Cardinals’ Training Camp, Brown has been reportedly labeled as the “un-guardable receiver” by Arizona’s stellar secondary and defense. That’s an incredible compliment, given the number of exceptional athletes currently residing on Arizona’s offense. Remember, this is a unit that features prolific receiving threats like the great Larry Fitzgerald and former first-rounder Michael Floyd.
Still, with all the training camp-hype surrounding the Cardinals’ third-round pick, it seemed fair for most fans to wonder just how well Brown would respond to a real-game scenario. While it may seem premature, the young man from Pittsburg State is already answering any and all doubters and critics with his ability to separate against NFL talent. Now, it should be an interesting test to see whether Brown will be able to continue his progression and parlay his spectacular preseason play into regular season opportunities. After all, the departure of Andre Roberts seems to have created an opening in Arizona’s receiving core over the offseason.
If Brown win’s the Cardinals’ No. 3 job behind Fitzgerald and Floyd as expected, he could have considerable upside as a late-round sleeper in fantasy football this year. Everyone knows that Head Coach Bruce Arians isn’t afraid to air it out with quarterback Carson Palmer under center, but with Andre Ellington – who is a solid receiving option himself – expected to take on the starting running back duties as well, Arizona might quickly transform into a high-flying offense capable of keeping defenses on their heels.
Additionally, Brown’s value increases substantially in PPR (Point Per Reception) League’s, as well as Dynasty and Keeper League’s. While the young man certainly has the ability to take the top off of a defense, he will likely find himself running more intermediate and crossing routes as a slot receiver in the Cardinals system. However, that shouldn’t discourage fantasy owners in the least. This 5’10” 180 pound sparkplug has more than enough speed and acceleration to score in a variety of ways, making him a valuable commodity in the long-term. Therefore, if you’re looking for a late-round pick with upside or a possible waiver wire gem early in the year, look no further than John Brown.