For most teams around the National Football League, bringing in local players as undrafted free agents is a common practice.
Chris Brown, a guard from USC, won’t have to go far to try and continue his playing career, he’ll just be wearing a different uniform.
Brown, a 6-foot-5, 310-pound offensive lineman, was born in Los Angeles and attended Loyola High School. He was part of the ESPN 300 recruiting list coming out of high school but it wasn’t a difficult decision for him to attend USC with a major in real estate development.
He redshirted as a freshman before making appearances the following season, even starting two games. During his final two seasons at the school, Brown started at guard in every game for the team and that is the position he figures to compete for with the Chargers.
Brown was not invited to the scouting combine and didn’t blow anyone away with his numbers at the USC pro day. He ran a 5.48 40-yard dash and posted 21 reps of 225 pounds on the bench press. He also registered a 29-inch vertical jump.
While not he most athletic, Brown will look to rely on his experience at a top college program and his technique to stick around as a rotational offensive lineman at the next level.
More from Bolt Beat
- LA Chargers: 3 reasons why the Bolts are a legit Super Bowl dark horse
- LA Chargers: 3 recently drafted players that could be cut before season
- The LA Chargers get a favorable offensive line ranking from PFF
- LA Chargers: 2 reasons why Davante Adams next offseason is far-fetched
- LA Chargers: Not outbidding the Titans for Julio Jones is absurd
The problem for Brown is that the Chargers currently have 13 offensive linemen on the roster and will likely keep no more than eight of them on the final 53-man roster. That leaves Brown fighting for a spot with four or five other players, including fellow undrafted rookie Koda Martin.
Chance to make final roster (1-10 scale): 2
Brown will be a popular player this summer due to his local ties, but he has an uphill climb to make the team. He’s not the biggest, strongest or most athletic guy around and barring injuries, the Chargers just have better options. In fact, I would rank Martin over Brown in terms of the team’s undrafted free agents on the offensive line.
Still, starting as many games as he did at one of the nation’s top football schools can’t just be easily dismissed so expect Brown to be given every opportunity to make the practice squad. Unless he struggles mightily and the team feels he’s just not ready for this level of competition, there’s a solid chance he’ll end up on the team’s practice squad.
The Chargers likely want to have as many options along the offensive line at their disposal as possible, so the team will keep Brown in the fold as long as he shows there is room for him to grow, at the very least.