The Pittsburgh Steelers’ season is over, but if you think the news surrounding the black-and-gold is over — think again. For the drama-filled Steelers, things are just heating up, and this is where the daily links article comes in. You might have missed some key news, and we fill you in and give you the latest, and sometimes greatest, news surrounding the Steelers.
Today in the Black-and-gold links article we take a look at the fact of when Pittsburgh Pirates’ manager Clint Hurdle is asked to give his thoughts on the Steelers saga with Antonio Brown, you can consider this horse dead. Yet we continue to beat it repeatedly.
Let’s get to the news:
Pirates’ Clint Hurdle on Antonio Brown/Steelers: ‘They’ll figure it out’
By: Chris Adamski, Pittsburgh Tribune-Review
Clint Hurdle spoke publicly for more than 2½ hours Saturday. The gregarious Pittsburgh Pirates manager is never afraid to speak eloquently and offer his thoughts and opinions on a variety of topics, sometimes whether they have anything to do with his team or his sport or not.
But even Hurdle doesn’t have any answers to the major Pittsburgh sports winter story du jour: the seemingly-pending divorce between the Pittsburgh Steelers and star receiver Antonio Brown.
Hurdle was asked during a sitdown with members of the media Saturday if he ever had clashed with potential future Hall of Fame-level players during his 16 years as a major league manager and if he believes in giving star players differing level of treatment.
The question had an obvious root in the Steelers/Brown saga , something Hurdle was sure to respectfully and deftly avoid immersing himself in.
“I have all the respect for the organization across town,” Hurdle said. “There’s things that happen sometimes that are never the way you draw them up. However, I’m the last person that’s going to get in that advice column and send something over to anybody about any of that. So, they will figure it out. They have smart people over there. They will figure it out.”
VIDEO: What is Antonio Brown’s legacy in Pittsburgh?
Watch Josina Anderson, John Fox and Jeff Saturday discuss by clicking HERE.
Paul Zeise: When will the Steelers learn?
By: Paul Zeise, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette
About a month ago, Antonio Brown quit on his team. He blew off the coaching staff and the owner, he was insubordinate in his refusal to get an MRI and then hid behind his agent the day of the season finale. He still hasn’t called back the owner of the team and he has spent time openly mocking the Steelers on social media.
This is how he repaid Mike Tomlin and Art Rooney II after they spent his entire career enabling him and making his excuses for his behavior. They kept telling us, “That’s just Antonio being Antonio,” even as it was clear his behavior was moving from harmless idiocy to self-destructive. He had become a locker room cancer long before he blew off the Steelers.
A number of players told reporters, off the record and on, that they wanted nothing to do with Brown. They were angry that he quit on them and angry that the Steelers decided to pay him for that final game even though he chose to not play. But hey, give Brown credit, he did stay on the sideline of that Bengals game until half time.
Oh, and did I forget the part where the Bengals game was an absolute must-win? The Steelers needed to win that game and get some help from the Browns in order to make the playoffs.
Rooney was quoted right after the season that he had “a hard time imagining” Brown back with the Steelers for training camp. I thought that statement wasn’t nearly strong enough, but I was willing to give him the benefit of the doubt.
I was willing to believe that the Steelers finally understand that some players aren’t worth the trouble. Sometimes a team needs to get rid of players — no matter how talented — in order to take a step forward. Brown has been with the Steelers for nine seasons now and has put up big numbers. It hasn’t translated to a lot of winning when it matters, but he does have great stats.
That was all about a month ago and it seemed clear that Brown was going to be sent elsewhere for the good of the team. It was going to be the dawn of a new era with the Steelers, absent of two of the three Killer B’s and also absent of all the drama and nonsense they bring with them.
Fast forward to today, and I’m not so sure that the Steelers have learned their lesson. There are now reports leaking out that the market for Brown might not be what they had hoped and that they aren’t likely to get as much in return for him as they want. And at the Pro Bowl, team leaders like Cam Hewyard, Maurkice Pouncey and JuJu Smith-Schuster have been quoted as saying they really want him back.
(To read more, click the link in the headline above...)