You had to know this was coming, right?
After news of the real reason Antonio Brown wasn’t in uniform for the Pittsburgh Steelers in Week 17 vs. the Cincinnati Bengals, it was only a matter of time until a source suggested Brown wanted out of Pittsburgh.
CBS Sports NFL Insider Jason La Confora provided this on his verified Twitter page Tuesday afternoon.
Antonio Brown has requested a trade. Im told it was not a demand but he has asked to be dealt. Very unlikely Rooney would capitulate. Brown has issues with Mike Tomlin and Ben Roethlisberger. Feels like the coach is too aligned with the QB.— Jason La Canfora (@JasonLaCanfora) January 1, 2019
According to La Confora, the reason behind Brown’s request is the fact he has an issue with both Mike Tomlin and quarterback Ben Roethlisberger. More specifically, he feels Tomlin is in too “aligned” with Roethlisberger.
If the team wants to trade Brown, it won’t come without a price, both figuratively and literally.
The literal price would be the $21 million dead money hit the team would suffer if they decided to deal the All-Pro receiver. The figurative price would be the lack of production on the field without Brown in the lineup. JuJu Smith-Schuster is a tremendous young talent, but has benefited greatly from the defensive attention being paid to No. 84.
Maybe this is just frustration with the season ending prematurely, or maybe this is the start of a much more serious problem inside the Steelers’ locker room. Fans want answers, and while they likely won’t get anything concrete anytime soon, Mike Tomlin will address the media on Wednesday for his season ending press conference.
You can bet there will be a ton of questions regarding everything from Brown’s reported request to be traded, his behavior last week and what the team plans to do in the future.
Get your popcorn ready...this is just getting started.