Duckling Profile: Meet Jalen Brown, the Answer to Addison’s Injury

The smell of pigskin and freshly cut turf field (figuratively speaking, of course) is in the air.

These past few weeks have been a whirlwind of football news.  With Bralon Addison down for the count, the Ducks are in need of new starting wide receivers for the coming season.

Enter true freshman Jalen Brown, an early high school graduate and the lone member of the 2014 prep recruiting class currently participating in spring practice.

Jalen Brown high-fiving our brave soldiers during the U.S. Army All-American Bowl.

PFC Brian N. Lang

Jalen Brown high-fiving soldiers during the 2014 U.S. Army All-American Bowl.

Originally from Phoenix, Arizona, Jalen Brown stands 6′ 2” tall and weighs roughly 185 pounds.  He played varsity all four years at his alma mater, Mountain Pointe.

During his time there, Brown racked up several prestigious accolades.  He was named 1st Team All-Region in 2010, All-Sections honors following his sophomore year; Arizona’s Gatorade Football Player-of-the-Year following his junior year; and he had his biggest year in 2013 …Brown was “the 2013 Division I Section III South Team Player of the Year, accrued All-USA Arizona first-team honors, Arizona Division I all-state acclaim, and Top 25 All-Arizona recognition for the Pride.”

He also took part in U.S. Army All-American Bowl his senior year — which invites only the best 90 players to play on two teams: East and West.  More than 200 of its alums have experienced successful NFL careers its 14 years since commission.

His career at Mountain Pointe ended on the highest high: an undefeated season and a state championship win.  His impressive career stats include a state all-time record of 52 touchdowns and the tying of a school record of 14 career interceptions, with 181 catches for a total of 3,367-yards.

Brown finished his high school career ranked as the No. 1 wide receiver and No. 7 player in Arizona.  Big name schools took a wholly understandable interest in the four-star WR (Arizona, Michigan, Nebraska, Ohio State, Oklahoma, Oregon State, Stanford, UCLA, USC, Vanderbilt, Washington, and Wisconsin), but he decided his talents would best be utilized under Coach Helfrich’s budding regime.  Wise choice, my friend.

Already fairly close to Marcus Mariota, Brown has made himself a possible contender for some serious game time this coming season.  Pre-injury, Bralon Addison recognized Brown’s blooming abilities: “He’s a 17-year old coming out of high school, he’s out here with 22-year old guys.  He was never intimidated or worried about messing up.  He just came out there and played hard and played fast.  I really think has a bright future ahead of him.”

His fellow teammates rave about him and the coaches couldn’t agree more.  In an “Emerald” article, Offensive Coordinator Scott Frost was quoted as saying, “I think his intelligence is the biggest thing.  He’s able to get lined up and know what he’s doing, having only been here for a quarter and four practices and that’s rare.”

Skill-wise, Jalen Brown is a versatile guy.  He’s got great body control, impressive hands (0:32 in the highlight reel, anyone?), and effortlessly eludes the initial tackler quick on his feet to get out of tricky situations for that extra yardage.  But he can also be the effective blocker at a moment’s notice.  Anything asked of him, Jalen Brown can do.  The video above, is a clear representation of what sort of player Brown is on the field.  Although college ball kicks up the intensity 10 notches, Brown has at the very least the baseline for greatness.

And greatness is something for which the Ducks strive.  Injuries are an unnecessary evil, but they happen.  While they are horrific tragedies, the only option is to keep moving.  Don’t lose momentum.  We wish Bralon Addison nothing but a swift recovery.

However, the Ducks can’t “Win The Day” with their focus on yesterday.  It’s time to find some potential replacements for the WRs who are leaving soon (or have left).  Recruitment is an endless cycle which may seem cold, but that’s the game.  Every member of the Ducks must be ready to hit the field and put points on the board or, of course, stop the other guys from doing so.

Jalen Brown’s early graduation may have been the best thing possible for the Ducks.  Replacing Addison will be a tough feat, but Brown is already a serious contender to takeover.  Though it’s more likely he’ll share the role with Keanon Lowe and Chance Allen, if he can have the killer year Tyner had as a true freshman, the starting position may be his to take for the duration of his Duck days.

Be sure to look out for Jalen Brown during the spring game on May 3rd, and the coming season.  It’s sure to be an explosive one!

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Laura Brehm

Laura Brehm

Laura is a sophomore cinema studies major at the University of Oregon enrolled in the Honors College. She spent four years competing on her high school's varsity dance team, consistently ranked top three in the state. Laura is also the senior prose editor for Ephemera Arts Journal. Sports-wise: the product of two avid sports fans from Jersey, Laura grew up attending Yankee games and cheering for the Giants. Now she devotes her team spirit to all things Oregon. You can follow her on Facebook or Instagram (@ladylaura11) because she isn't a fan of limiting herself to 140 characters.

  • Rusty

    Lets see what brown can do for us! Go Brown go Ducks !

  • hooverli

    But can he block? isn’t playing time for a Duck WR based on the ability to block?

    • Laura

      Brown can block. I think his Junior high light reel had a block or two. Most of them focused on his receiving abilities, though. Now he’s had four months of weights and four weeks of spring practice to learn to block like a Duck. The spring game will be the great decider for fans and media. Thanks for the read!

      • hooverli

        Thanks for clarifying, Laura. You da WOman!

  • Mark Gilbert

    What I love about him from the tape of the games is his ability to catch the ball with his hands,,so many WR allow the ball to get to their body but he goes up and gets it or as I see it attacks the ball coming to him which is what I look for in a WR..much like M Irvin did,,plus he is extremely good after the catch.. Im impressed,,also he is 6-2 which is a nice size to go against the DBs

  • hokieduck

    Jalen Brown and Devon Allen both will compete for this position. Then there is Dwayne Stanford who is 6’5″ and will return from his own knee injury.

    The Ducks have an embarrassment of riches in the receiving corps. As hooverli says below, it may come down to who can most effectively block and route run.

    • hooverli

      I completely agree, about the depth of WRs. They’re young, but skilled and well coached. And having Marcus at QB will make it easier on these youngsters.