Pittsburgh Steelers wide receiver Antonio Brown said “trade me” in a tweet yesterday. Even if the tweet was meant in jest, his reported decision to not show up to work on Monday was certainly not in jest.
The Pittsburgh Steelers are winless after two games in the 2018 regular season, having tied to the Cleveland Browns in Week 1 before failing to complete a comeback effort against Patrick Mahomes and the Kansas City Chiefs.
While the Steelers offense woke up in Week 2 behind 452 passing yards from quarterback Ben Roethlisberger, who bounced back after tossing three picks against Cleveland, they just couldn’t keep up with Mahomes.
Star wide receiver Antonio Brown quietly struggled despite the outburst of offense, as he turned 17 targets into just 67 yards, making him the least efficient pass-catcher on the field for either team. Brown was observed pouting on the sideline after a touchdown scored by a teammate, and that isn’t the first time he’s done something like this.
However, it just got worse for the Steelers, because sources informed the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette’s Ed Bouchette that Brown did not report to work on Monday. This news comes after we saw Brown behave unprofessionally during the Steelers loss to Kansas City, and his “trade me” tweet, which was even more unprofessional.
Brown is one of the most talented players in NFL history, but he’s also been a headcase for the Steelers. This isn’t the first time they’ve had to deal with an outburst from Brown, but the fact that he took to social media and didn’t bother showing up to work could make this an even messier situation for Steelers head coach Mike Tomlin.
Throw in the fact that the Steelers are 0-1-1, and this is the absolute last thing Tomlin needed to deal with right now.
If Brown is disciplined by the team or decides to pull a Le’Veon Bell (worst-case scenario), then the Steelers would need rookie wide receiver James Washington to step up. JuJu Smith-Schuster is a legitimate star and tight end Jesse James looked like a beast in Week 2, so the Steelers would have options even without Bell or Brown.
But if Brown is serious about wanting a trade, then we can only imagine the chaos that will take over the NFL. This is a volatile situation that is still developing, and fans can only imagine what Brown might do next. The Steelers are in an unenviable situation, to say the least.