In the second round of the 2005 NFL Draft, the Philadelphia Eagles selected Reggie Brown, a receiver who was supposed to become a consistent threat to make plays all over the field. After four years in the league, Brown has yet to show he can consistently play at a moderately high level in the Eagles' offense.
Granted, this is a system that does not typically favor huge numbers for a receiver (the exception being Terrell Owens in 2004). However, Brown was drafted to be a player that could consistently produce in the NFL.
So what happened to this once promising receiver? To be honest, he has only had one bad year, which happened to be the most recent one (18 catches for 252 yards and one touchdown). He had a decent rookie season when he caught 43 balls for 571 yards and four scores. Even the next two seasons were decent in Andy Reid's offense, as Brown totaled 107 catches for 1,596 yards and 12 touchdowns.
Are those Larry Fitzgerald-like statistics? Of course not, but again, this is an offense that spreads the ball around to many targets.
So why is Brown a potential target for being cut after just one sub-par season? There are several glaring reasons:
Unusual Receiver Depth on Eagles' Roster
Brown is trying to fight off numbers this year. Drafting Jeremy Maclin put four very capable receivers on this roster, with the others being DeSean Jackson, Jason Avant, and Kevin Curtis. Hank Baskett is also someone Reid will keep around. Even though Baskett is not a consistent producer, he is able to make the occasional big play that can turn the tide of a game.
That leaves the sixth spot (because I believe the Birds will carry six receivers) to Brown, Brandon Gibson, who is a sixth-round rookie, and Shaheer McBride, who seems to be a fan favorite for that last spot. If one impresses in training camp, I believe that roster spot is theirs.
I know this seems hypocritical when I just said Baskett is not consistent, but Baskett does make several huge plays each season. Even when Brown has a good game, there is rarely a big play in that game. The Eagles now have receivers like Curtis and Avant who can pick up the short and intermediate plays.
There are just too many one-catch games for Brown to help him make this roster.
Brown's hands leave a lot to be desired. It became commonplace to watch a ball bound off of his chest/fingers/helmet etc. To improve his chances of making the team, Brown better show in camp that he learned how to catch a football consistently.
So does Brown make the team? Does he deserve another chance? Honestly, I have not seen enough out of the other two to take the spot from him. But if they show up at training camp and Brown does not, he may need to find another home.