NASHVILLE, Tenn. -- When Mississippi native A.J. Brown flew to the Bay Area before the draft, he didn't just meet with San Francisco 49ers brass -- he got to meet a Hall of Famer who grew up not far from Brown's hometown of Starkville.
Jerry Rice, the wide receiver who redefined the position as a perennial MVP candidate in the 1980s and '90s, is from Crawford, Mississippi. That's just a 30-minute drive from Starkville, where Brown -- the wide receiver the Tennessee Titans selected at No. 51 in the second round -- was a high school star.