Eagles’ A.J. Brown explains his mentality as opener nears

·2 min read

Always open: A.J. Brown explains his mentality as opener nears originally appeared on NBC Sports Philadelphia

What do A.J. Brown and a 24-hour diner have in common?

They’re always open.

At least that’s what Brown likes to think. As reporters were welcomed into the locker room at the NovaCare Complex for the first time since after the 2019 season, they were given a glimpse at Brown’s new home away from home. And the sign he has hanging above his locker.

“I should have took that down,” Brown said with a smile. “But it’s cool. But I’m always open. I kind of forgot you guys were coming in.”

But he stands by the mentality: He’s always open.

“Most definitely,” Brown said. “Even when I’m covered, I’m open. Give me a chance. That’s my mindset. Good thing Jalen knows my mindset. I’m excited, he’s excited.”

Brown, 25, will play his first regular season game as a member of the Eagles on Sunday in Detroit. It’s a season with high expectations for the team and for Brown.

Throughout the summer, Brown looked the part. The Eagles traded away a first-round pick for Brown and then gave him a $100 million contract. They’re clearly hoping he’s the kind of game-changing receiver that will help their offense get over the hump.

And pairing Brown with DeVonta Smith, Dallas Goedert, Quez Watkins, Miles Sanders behind one of the best offensive lines in the NFL has expectations soaring.

“We do have a lot of talent,” Brown said. “We have a lot of great guys on this offense. What we can do is be really special. But we have to focus on what we have to do and execute. That’s what it comes down to. No matter how many good players we have, if you don’t execute the game plan, it doesn’t matter.”

While Brown is pumped up about making his Eagles debut, this will be his fourth season in the NFL. He took a page out of his quarterback’s book and downplayed the importance of Sunday.

“I’m excited but I’m not new to it,” Brown said. “I’m going to let the game be what it is and I try to never make the game bigger than it is. Just go out and do my job.”

It’ll be fascinating to see how Nick Sirianni and Shane Steichen use Brown in their offense. He’s such an intriguing weapon and is so dangerous with the ball in his hands. But he’s also dangerous when he’s covered. Even then, he thinks he’s open.

As for that sign … does the other side say closed?

“You’ll never see that,” Brown said.

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