CLEVELAND, OH - JANUARY 01: Wide receiver Antonio Brown #84 of the Pittsburgh Steelers catches a pass in front of defensive back Mike Adams #20 of the Cleveland Browns at Cleveland Browns Stadium on January 1, 2012 in Cleveland, Ohio. (Photo by Matt Sullivan/Getty Images)
My favorite kinds of people are the ones who wake up in the morning with a sense of purpose. That, in turn, creates positive energy, and that energy is contagious.
That's a big part of the reason it's appropriate to mention Antonio Brown, and why it shouldn't be a surprise to anyone he's had a large amount of success in, historically, a short amount of time.
It's worthy of mention as talks apparently continue in regards to a long-term contract for Mike Wallace.
Any early-morning riser and Twitter follower in SteelerNation knows Brown's now famous mantra. As far as I know, it's uniquely his: "Eyes Up, Chest Up, Prayed Up," or, in TwitterSpeak, E.U.C.U.P.U.
Rarely a morning doesn't go by Brown isn't up, proclaiming his motto to his followers, and generally expressing enthusiastic sentiment. Another Steelers representative has a similarly positive catch-phrase. Steelers defensive coordinator Dick Lebeau is known for beginning his meetings with a rousing "Good morning, gentlemen, it's a great day to be alive."
It's not hard to get the sense Brown has a similar attitude. This morning, he had a particularly spirited conversation with former Steelers DE Nick Eason.
@njeason you the man bro ! You still boxing ?! You exemplify what a tough player is! Your positive attitude n perseverance! Miss u in Pitt!— Antonio Brown(@AntonioBrown84) March 27, 2012
It's fun to be around people with so much energy. You can feel it in each of his Tweets, and you can see it on the field. The only head-scratching part to him is how he lasted all the way until the 6th round, and the fact the Steelers didn't even use their first of two sixth-round picks on him (Jonathan Dwyer went first).
It's contagious. Dare I even suggest the possible nomination of Brown as a captain in 2012?
With ultimate leader Hines Ward having ridden off into the Georgia sunset, there's a spot open, should the Steelers wish to name another offensive captain alongside the likely captain QB Ben Roethlisberger. Brown became a reliable target of the Steelers' receiving corps, and his work ethic is widely known and respected.
It seems more likely captaincy will be given to third-year C Maurkice Pouncey, considering the amount of communication and knowledge required to play such a position, symbolic leadership is vital, but Brown has certainly earned consideration for it.
Don't let anyone tell you a positive attitude doesn't reap its rewards. If they do, you can tell them about the short, skinny kid from a nowhere college who became the Steelers first team MVP to be given the award in his second season since Rod Woodson, who is also the first player in NFL history to amass 1,000 yards in receiving and kick returns in the same year.
Perhaps he was just vastly underrated by scouting personnel around the league. Or, perhaps Brown just wakes up raring to go every day with a sense of purpose.