Robert Griffin III: Hollywood Brown Wanted Trade Due to Greg Roman, Not Lamar Jackson

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Marquise Brown is among many high-profile NFL wide receivers who found a new home this offseason after the Baltimore Ravens traded him to the Arizona Cardinals during the NFL draft.

On Thursday, ESPN analyst (and ex-Ravens backup quarterback) Robert Griffin III provided some insight into why the move may have gone down.

Robert Griffin III @RGIII

Throwing the ball more is not the proven recipe for success for the Ravens. In the last 3 years, the <a href=”https://twitter.com/Ravens?ref_src=twsrc%5Etfw”>@Ravens</a> have only thrown the ball more than running it once. That was last year and it was the only year the Ravens had a losing record. Lamar being out didn’t help either. 2/4

Robert Griffin III @RGIII

Marquise Brown had 146 targets last year but they weren’t all catchable targets. With Lamar being out down the stretch, Hollywood’s longest reception was 15 yards in the last 5 games. Arizona gives him an opportunity to be a star in a system he knows from college. 4/4

That mirrors what Peter King of NBC Sports reported Monday.

“This I know: He didn’t want to be in Baltimore anymore,” King wrote. “He didn’t like the offense—too conservative; not enough big-strike opportunities—and he welcomes a reunion with his college quarterback, Kyler Murray.”

Brown, who played in Baltimore for three seasons, caught 91 passes for 1,008 yards and six touchdowns last year.

The ex-Raven will reunite with his old Oklahoma teammate in Murray, who won the 2018 Heisman Trophy with Brown as his No. 1 wide receiver.

He’ll also be the team’s de facto top wideout to start the season with DeAndre Hopkins suspended for the first six games after a reported violation of the NFL’s policy on performance-enhancing drugs.

Brown is going to a completely different offense in Arizona. Per Sharp Football Analysis, the Cardinals used a four-wideout set more often than any other team in 2021. Meanwhile, the Ravens used two-tight end sets more than any other team.

Both teams passed the ball 56.4 percent of the time last year, but the passing game rolls through the wide receivers in Arizona.

As Griffin noted, Brown’s up for a second contract soon. He’s got two years left on his rookie deal after the Cardinals picked up his fifth-year option. Brown has the potential to break out in Arizona with Murray in an offense that better utilizes wide receivers, and that gives him an opportunity to cash in big.