San Diego Chargers: Donald Brown the Perfect Addition
The San Diego Chargers were able to sign Donald Brown, adding another weapon to the offense. While signing the former Colt doesn't seem like the most marquee move, the upside of this signing is huge.
Brown averaged 5.3 yards per carry over 102 carries last season. He also accounted for eight total touchdowns for Indianapolis while playing in all 16 games.
In 2011, Brown averaged 4.9 yards per carry with the Colts.
When I turned on the tape, I was impressed with what I saw. Brown clearly has a great downfield vision, something that helps him on his runs outside of the tackle. He doesn't have elite speed, but he makes up for it with fantastic strength and strong legs.
The 27-year old back shouldn't be categorized as a bruiser. Instead, think of Brown as an athletic playmaker that isn't afraid to lower his shoulder and pack a punch on any play. It sounds simple, but Brown just knows how to get downfield. He doesn't hesitate; he'll find the opening when it's there and take advantage of open field.
While he won't take every snap in 2014 for the Chargers, Brown will have success if the team can utilize him correctly. He doesn't fumble, (no fumbles in 634 career touches) so the confidence should be there for the coaching staff. Don't be surprised if Brown has over 200 touches next season.
Ryan Matthews clearly isn't the long-term option for this offense. Despite a brief run of folks thinking he was an elite back, Matthews has experienced a complete drop-off with injuries and lack of a strong burst.
It's safe to say that if San Diego wants a successful running game, having Donald Brown play like he did in 2013 would be a huge step in the right direction.