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Antonio done with the Steelers

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7 minutes ago, Villain The Foe said:

As long as he's not a Jet.

 

WHAT UP, YO? 

You live in Sd by chance? ( useta 2001-2008)

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PITTSBURGH -- The printing is neat. Block letters, evenly spaced, written with a mechanical pencil so nothing is missed while sharpening a yellow No. 2.

Antonio Brown's penmanship fills six of these spiral notebooks, one for every year he's been in the NFL. They all have black covers, all are packed with detailed precision. Routes, checks, the opponent's tendencies in every situation Pittsburgh Steelers offensive coordinator Todd Haley can imagine. Brown draws arrows. He records asides Haley utters. And then he goes back, every night, marking specific sections in bright yellow highlighter.

"He's like a ninja back there," fellow receiver Darrius Heyward-Bey said, pantomiming super-quick pen to paper.

"He's always writing," Martavis Bryant, another fellow receiver, said.

"If you write it down," Brown said, "you've got a memory."

This is the Brown the Steelers know.

 

 

Yes, there is the Brown everyone else knows, the one of the goofy touchdown celebrations and staggering numbers -- 136 catches, 1,834 yards this year, on top of 239 catches, 3,197 yards the two years before that. But those numbers, the MVP talk opposing coaches keep uttering, it's all, Haley said, because of what's quietly stocked in those notebooks: "He's putting in the time and effort. He's studying it. He'll come and remind you he's taking notes by repeating something obscure you said weeks ago."

The Steelers might've backed into Saturday night's wild-card matchup with the Bengals, after dropping a desultory effort to the rival Ravens in Week 16 and needing upset help from the Bills in Week 17. But never mind; fans of the game that is football should rejoice. This is one more week of watching Antonio Brown. Brian Billick said he's the Steph Curry of the NFL, Ike Taylor said he has the best lateral quickness he's ever seen and none of it is hyperbole.

"He's a guy," Steelers corner William Gay said, "who never stops working."

Brown's work ethic is legendary in these parts. He doesn't have the measurables of a prototypical top-flight receiver (though Steelers coach Mike Tomlin laughed, "Try telling him that"). He doesn't have one obvious otherworldly skill, like John Brown's speed or Odell Beckham Jr.'s hands. But he works. He'll run ladders for hours after practice has ended, he has more catches over the last two years (265) than anyone has EVER had in a two-year span and he still works on the jugs machine, catching balls, every week. He goes to a Gold's Gym at night, when most of his teammates are headed to bed, and James Harrison, the NFL's noted workout master, said if on a scale of 1-10, his own commitment is a 10+, "Antonio is right there with me."

Brown lockers in the same little corner as Harrison, by the equipment room and away from any of the usual shenanigans in an NFL locker room. He interviews teammates for a weekly Steelers TV bit and he occasionally pulls out a hard hat when he does it, but he largely avoids large crowds these days. He's not prone to grandiose promises or pronouncements and he mostly dismisses those that others make, like when Broncos coach Gary Kubiak and then the Browns' Mike Pettine and Bengals' Marvin Lewis all in succession said Brown should be considered for the league's MVP award.

 

 

"That goes to a quarterback," Brown said last week, with an amused smile and in his usual post-practice position, slumped in a chair in front of his locker.

If there is one boast Brown cops to, it's in the photo he's hung next to his locker: Him, holding a microphone to Ben Roethlisberger, above Roethlisberger's autograph and the quarterback's penned words, "AB, we're unstoppable."

It didn't happen overnight. In fact, the Steelers rarely threw to Brown in 2010, his first year here, as a sixth-rounder out of Central Michigan. Harrison said he always worked absurdly hard, though; Gay remembers Brown's rookie year, when he was a scout team receiver and every starting corner would moan, "Man, you're a pest -- can we get someone else?"

Catch by catch, Roethlisberger's trust mushroomed. Now, he throws to Brown when he has no business throwing to him, in the face of double and triple teams, when Brown changes a route because instinct tells him to, when Brown has a corner who hasn't given up a touchdown in two years blanketing him.

That last one, that was the Broncos' Chris Harris, who was part of a self-dubbed "No-Fly Zone" that Brown ultimately tagged for 16 catches, 189 yards and two touchdowns. Haley said in that game, after an ineffective first half, he essentially reverted to a back-of-the-clipboard game plan, a la an unscripted training-camp scrimmage. He lined Brown up in spots he doesn't line up in, he asked him to run routes he doesn't ordinarily run and it was all seamless.

"I've learned pretty quickly not to place a ceiling on AB because he's going to shatter it," Haley said.

Roethlisberger has played with Hines Ward, Santonio Holmes, Plaxico Burress and Mike Wallace. He calls it as "special" a roster of receivers as any, and when he's asked, from that group, what about Brown stands out, the first thing he says is, "his work ethic is unbelievable."

It's an -- to use a Tomlin word -- obvious adage: When a team's best player is its hardest worker, it bodes well for the team. And so it's not all that surprising that that trait was on the tip of Roethlisberger's tongue Wednesday either. Roethlisberger made semi-waves on his radio show Tuesday, when he said the Steelers needed more from touchdown wunderkind Martavis Bryant.

 

 

A mega-target with illogical speed, Bryant had nine touchdowns in just three starts as a rookie last season -- after sitting the first six weeks of the year because of an unimpressive camp. He missed the first five games of this season while serving a suspension (for a positive marijuana test) and nursing a knee injury, and then ripped off seven touchdowns and 759 yards in the next nine games. But he's been quiet (two catches) in the last two, and so Roethlisberger publicly said he's "got to get tough. You've got to make tough plays and you've got to make tough catches and you have to find ways to do everything you can to help this team." Describing to a T -- that's right -- Brown.

"In our room, we all expect everyone to be big time, and that's because of a guy like AB," Heyward-Bey said. "Ben can say that and demand that of Martavis because if AB is working like that, and trying like that, no one else has an excuse not to."

Brown is more conscious of this than ever before in his career. He said he does think about being a leader, but mostly "to lead by example." Still, Wednesday, Brown pulled Bryant aside after practice to work on the jugs machine with him. He pointedly asked Bryant, "Do you want to go to the Super Bowl?" Later, Bryant said, "I never say no to AB. He knows everything."

Sure, Brown comes off a bit showboaty, a bit high-maintenance about his touches. It's the easy explanation for his animated frustration with backup Landry Jones, after a failed connection during Roethlisberger's mid-season absence with a foot sprain. Tomlin, who rarely is public in his chastising, had to share after the Steelers' win over the Cardinals that he'd sat Brown down and told him point blank: "His career will be defined on how many Lombardis he contributes to our stash."

Brown said it was a fair point and an important conversation, but he also said that explanation wasn't necessarily complete. He said the emoting was because he does want to contribute, as much as he can. He has an unshakeable faith in his ability and assets (Heyward-Bey joked Wednesday, "If you ask Antonio right now, he's 7-foot-2"), and for all his successes, he hasn't changed. Tomlin regularly sticks his head in the receiver room and says, "Today we're going to take care of AB, OK?" Then practice comes and Brown refuses to take any fewer snaps, telling all comers, "Nah, I'm good."

0ap3000000611152.jpg

His teammates just voted him their season MVP for a third time. This week, Tomlin said he wouldn't trade him for any receiver in the game.

And so, here the Steelers sit, looking to add to that Lombardi stash, a potentially frightening and definitely dangerous six seed, in very large part because of Brown. Wednesday afternoon, he already had three pages filled in his notebook on this third matchup with the Bengals. After all, he's not leaving anything to chance.

http://www.nfl.com/news/story/0ap3000000619137/article/antonio-browns-steeler-stardom-the-product-of-rare-work-ethic

 

This is an article from 2016 - discusses his work ethic. 4 time team MVP on the Steelers (voted by his peers). I think the idea that he's just a giant cancer is over blown. 

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I'd offer them Jordan Jenkins, he fits their scheme and he doesn't have a position in a 4-3. He's been a stand up OLB since Georgia. OLB is also a position of need for them. I'd also give them a 5th this year and a conditional 3rd next year that can go to a 2nd based on Browns play next year. Even if Brown only gives you 2 more years of elite play it's well worth it. I think people forget that he had 104 catches and 15 TD's this past season. I think it's a no brainer to try to bring him in. 

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55 minutes ago, JetFanatic said:

Thank you SteelerNation for a big 9 years...time to move on and forward..........✌🏽 #NewDemands

Who gets him?  I think the Niners end up with him. 

 

Cool story Antonio.  The Steelers own your rights through 2021.  They're not going to cut you ($21M dead money hit if cut now, $7M if cut after June 1).  And they're not going to trade you unless they get the right deal.  They're also not going to be the ones to blink first, as the Le'Veon Bell situation proved.

Your only recourse is to hold out and cost yourself game checks.  You turn 31 in July, and in 2020 at 32 will be less valuable than you are now.  And the Steelers will still own your rights then and will be fully prepared to do this dance all over again next year. 

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25 minutes ago, Beerfish said:

it is so tough to deal with character things and know if they are long term or just situational.  He is such a great great player.

He may be a jerk but work ethic is something you either have or you don't and IMO it's what sets the great ones apart. The talent level is so close for everyone at the NFL level - it's usually the work ethic that produces the great ones. Brown has it, and changing teams won't change that. 

We don't want to pick at #3 anyway if Bosa isn't there - which he likely won't be. Trade down to #20 for AB, draft a few o-linemen and watch Darnold blow the F up in 2019.

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26 minutes ago, Barry McCockinner said:

http://www.nfl.com/news/story/0ap3000000619137/article/antonio-browns-steeler-stardom-the-product-of-rare-work-ethic

 

This is an article from 2016 - discusses his work ethic. 4 time team MVP on the Steelers (voted by his peers). I think the idea that he's just a giant cancer is over blown. 

Wow.  What a conundrum.  If the article had been from 2018, I'd feel a lot better about him.  A lot can happen in three years.  Based on his most recent history, the no-show, the incident with his ex, the bizarre behavior, he appears to be troubled.  Pass.

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29 minutes ago, Barry McCockinner said:

http://www.nfl.com/news/story/0ap3000000619137/article/antonio-browns-steeler-stardom-the-product-of-rare-work-ethic

 

This is an article from 2016 - discusses his work ethic. 4 time team MVP on the Steelers (voted by his peers). I think the idea that he's just a giant cancer is over blown. 

Good article.... Thanks, BM.

 

Add this guy to Robbie, Quincy (slot) with Burnett and you have quite the arsenal! 

 

That said, the years of bad drafting that has led to 1/3 of the players not being picked up makes it hard to give Pitt. what it would want.

We'll have to use all our picks strengthening the OL, getting an Edge rusher and some other depth pieces.

Too bad!, 

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17 minutes ago, choon328 said:

I'd offer them Jordan Jenkins, he fits their scheme and he doesn't have a position in a 4-3. He's been a stand up OLB since Georgia. OLB is also a position of need for them. I'd also give them a 5th this year and a conditional 3rd next year that can go to a 2nd based on Browns play next year. Even if Brown only gives you 2 more years of elite play it's well worth it. I think people forget that he had 104 catches and 15 TD's this past season. I think it's a no brainer to try to bring him in. 

I admire your creativity and wanted to dismiss it out of hand. In reflection, it is an intriguing proposal.  I just don't think they'd go for it.  It's just not enough.  They'll want at least a low #1, unless they get desperate, which I don't think is going to happen. 

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22 minutes ago, Jetsfan80 said:

 

Cool story Antonio.  The Steelers own your rights through 2021.  They're not going to cut you ($21M dead money hit if cut now, $7M if cut after June 1).  And they're not going to trade you unless they get the right deal.  They're also not going to be the ones to blink first, as the Le'Veon Bell situation proved.

Your only recourse is to hold out and cost yourself game checks.  You turn 31 in July, and thus will be 32 in 2020, and thus less valuable than you are now.  And the Steelers will still own your rights then and will be fully prepared to do this dance all over again next year. 

It won't cost the Steelers any more money on the cap to trade him. It's a $21 million hit whether he's on the team or not. Actually the Steelers would be saving $15 million in actual cash that they wouldn't have to pay him in 2019 but the dead money from his bonus is what would keep the cap hit at $21 million.

 

Not to mention that in 2020/2021 they won't be paying a 32/33 year old WR $19 million per year especially when you have Smith-Schuster and Watt needing new contracts in a couple of years.

And the Steelers lost their fight with Bell. He didn't play for them, Connor was good but his overall season was not nearly as good as Bell has been. I could easily make the argument that they make the playoffs if Bell plays all year. They also aren't getting anything for him and he still tied up almost $15 million on their cap that they couldn't use last year on FA's. They overplayed their hand banking on that he would come back during the season. You can argue Bell lost bc he didn't get paid last year but he's going to cash in this off season with less miles on him then he would've had if he played last year. The Steelers are going to lose a premier player for nothing.

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9 minutes ago, slimjasi said:

Agree. 

He basically quit on a team that was fighting for a playoff spot. I mean, that's rough. 

I thought it was he didn't show up for a practice or two and the coach said he's not playing? I don't blame the coach for doing that, but I also wouldn't characterize that as Brown quitting on the team. He was certainly wrong for skipping out on practice for whatever stupid spat was going on.

The guy is potentially an all-time great receiver - I don't think it's smart to write off his career over this incident.

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15 minutes ago, Joe W. Namath said:

Leveon played this game.  And lost.

Next up, brown.  Steelers have the upper hand.

Steelers have NOTHNG I don't remember seeing them in the playoffs or the Super Bowl. 

2 of the best players in the NFL both on the Steelers tells me there is dissension and turmoil more than anyone knows. 

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