Charles Brown was the Saints' starting left tackle last season until a dreadful Week 15 performance against Robert Quinn and the Rams led to his benching for the final two games of the regular season and the playoffs. The Saints decided this offseason to move on from Brown, who was their second-round pick in the 2010 draft out of USC.
Hoping that one team's trash is another team's treasure, the New York Giants on Tuesday announced that they have signed Brown to a free-agent contract.
Interesting signing, especially because Brown doesn't even turn 27 until next week and has 22 games' worth of experience as a starting NFL tackle. Given the state of the Giants' offensive line at the end of the 2013 season, there's no number of offensive line additions that I would consider excessive. So far this offseason they have added guard Geoff Schwartz, center J.D. Walton, guard/tackle John Jerry and now Brown, and they believe they'll have Chris Snee back from his hip injury.
But they still have some degree of concern about starting left tackle Will Beatty's (a) timetable to return from his broken leg and (b) overall effectiveness in light of his disappointing 2013 season. They still can't be certain that Snee will be healthy, Jerry won't be suspended for his role in the Dolphins bullying scandal or Walton will be any good. So, the more depth the better on the line, where they fell so pitifully apart last year.
And if you're going to add depth pieces on the line, I have no issue with taking a flyer on a still-young guy with some experience who once showed enough promised to be drafted in the second round. Brown could be a valuable backup at a couple of positions, and in the best-case scenario could develop into a starter at one of the tackle spots for a long period of time. Given what free agents cost at this point in the market, there's no doubt it's a worthwhile move to make.