San Diego State's Brown Plays Like Jennings

We talked to Vincent Brown, who isn't big and isn't fast but did nothing but make big plays for the Aztecs. No wonder he lists the Packers' Greg Jennings as one of his favorite players.

Like Green Bay Packers star receiver Greg Jennings, San Diego State's Vincent Brown isn't the biggest receiver. Nor is he the fastest receiver.

What he is is one of the best receivers in the 2011 NFL Draft.

During a superb senior season, Brown caught 69 passes for 1,352 yards and 10 touchdowns. His 19.6 yards per reception ranked fourth nationally — an impressive figure considering Brown will neither tower over opposing cornerbacks nor run past them at an unimposing 5-foot-11 and a pro day 40-yard time of 4.57 seconds.

No wonder Brown lists Jennings among his favorite receivers. The 5-foot-11 Jennings isn't going to run past too many cornerbacks, either, but he ranked second in the NFL with a 16.6-yard average among receivers with at least 65 grabs.

"It's understanding what my job is, understanding my position, how to run a route, how to not be off with my steps," Brown told Packer Report last week. "Just make sure that I'm sound in my route-running and understanding the defenses and what they're trying to do. When you understand those things, it makes it easy to get open and make plays."

Brown is listed as the 17th-best receiver in this draft and has a fifth-round grade, according to the official NFL rankings that were given to Packer Report. Much of that low ranking is based on measurables. Of the top 20 receivers, Brown is the slowest while running straight-forward wearing shorts. Only two of the top 20 are shorter than Brown.

But turn on the film, and Brown emerges, regardless of whether he's playing outside or in the slot. He's got great hands, is tough and simply has a will to get the ball that can't be quantified, traits he showed during a strong week at the Senior Bowl, according to insiders. Scouts love his crisp routes and understanding of how to get open against man and zone coverage. While he might lack long speed, he's shown plenty of quickness to get past jam coverage.

"I'm not the fastest guy," said Brown, who had a gain of 50-plus yards in six of 13 games as a senior. "So, I'm always looking for ways to better my game so I can get open because I can't just burn past guys all the time. I have to rely on fine-tuning my routes and my footwork."

Since he was a little boy, Brown would tell his father, Vincent Brown Sr., about how he wanted to play in the NFL. His dad promised to give him every opportunity to make that come true.

With the draft less than a week away, that dream is about to come true.

"It's crazy," Brown said. "It's kind of crazy to look back at all the hard work over the years, and to finally see it paying off, every day, the anticipation builds. I just want to find out where I'm going. It's a great thing. It's exciting to know it's almost here after all the stuff that I've been through."

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Bill Huber is publisher of Packer Report magazine and and has written for Packer Report since 1997. E-mail him at, or leave him a question in Packer Report's subscribers-only Packers Pro Club forum. Find Bill on Twitter at

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