Brown looks set for a role as cover defender, if anything, at Sunderland this season.
The Black Cats boss opted to play Younes Kaboul and Sebastian Coates as the first choice centre-back pairing during the side's 4-2 defeat to Leicester City on the opening day of the season on Saturday.
Advocaat has said that former Manchester United defender Brown is fit, but will only play if he really needs him to.
He said in the Sunderland Echo: “Wes has a different role this season.
“We’re only going to use him if we really need him.
“But he’s fit, yes.”
The report indicates that John O'Shea may not have the bit-part role that Brown has going forward, as the Sunderland captain is said to be in contention for this weekend's clash with Norwich City at the Stadium of Light.
Brown, 35, seems to be acting as cover and dressing room experience on Wearside this season, but after a couple of seasons of being used regularly at the heart of the defence, one does wonder whether he will like this new role, and actively seek a move away or assurances by Advocaat before the end of the month when the transfer window closes.
There is every chance that Brown could make a decent number of appearances this season even in his current capacity given possible injuries and suspensions that may arise, but it will be interesting to see in the coming weeks as to whether Brown is entirely happy with the situation.