The Oakland Raiders are thrilled about the addition of Antonio Brown to their team, and they want to make the most of his presence.
According to Las Vegas Review-Journal Raiders reporter Michael Gehlkin, the Raiders plan to use Brown in multiple ways this season. That includes having him work in the slot.
Antonio Brown TD from practice today. Came vs. nickel CB Lamarcus Joyner. Raiders want to move Brown around field. Not just a Z. His versatile role to include work in slot. https://t.co/C1IJ6GTBrj
— Michael Gehlken (@GehlkenNFL) May 23, 2019
Brown is a true No. 1 receiver and typically has operated as the “X” receiver during his career with the Pittsburgh Steelers. The X receiver lines up on the outside, at the line of scrimmage, is often the primary option on passing plays, and tends to draw the opposing team’s best cornerback. Prior to becoming as dominant as he did with Pittsburgh, Brown served as a slot receiver — the “Z” position, also known as a flanker. That receiver lines up behind the line of scrimmage and typically in between a tight end and another receiver split further out wide. Slot receivers often draw nickel cornerbacks in coverage, which can create the opportunity for a mismatch.
The Arizona Cardinals under Bruce Arians moved their best receiver — Larry Fitzgerald — to the slot to take advantage of such mismatches and help extend his career. If the Raiders are thinking about doing the same with Brown, they are thinking creatively and looking for ways to get the most out of him.
The 7-time Pro Bowl receiver is coming off a 104-catch, 1,297-yard season for Pittsburgh. Brown’s 15 receiving touchdowns last season led the league.