Despite a whole host of names to talk to at the Pro Bowl and the Super Bowl less than seven days away, it would appear that Antonio Brown is still the only topic in football. But while talk about a possible trade continues to dominate the headlines, two reports from the last few days finally indicate that some progress might have been made between the Pittsburgh Steelers and their star receiver.
According to Jeremy Fowler of ESPN, Brown’s agent, Drew Rosenhaus, reached out to ESPN on Friday to deny a recent report in the press, and in doing so appeared to suggest that some form of contact has been made with the Steelers since the season had ended.
Drew Rosenhaus to ESPN on Fansided report of possible Antonio Brown/PIT reconciliation: "(Reporter) has no idea what our position is. We have not shared it with anyone outside of the Steelers. We have shared our thoughts w/ the Steelers but will keep those discussions internal"— Jeremy Fowler (@JFowlerESPN) January 25, 2019
A fact seemingly confirmed in a report from Ian Rapoport of the NFL Network on Sunday.
More on Antonio Brown: The #Steelers are exploring trade options, but Brown hasn’t closed the door on returning. He’s maintained a steady dialogue with some in the organization he’s close with to express that sentiment. Still, he should draw significant interest on the market.— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) January 27, 2019
Heading to ATL for @SuperBowl, the future of #Steelers WR Antonio Brown remains the dominant non-SB story. Where things stand: While a fresh start is now the preferred outcome, the team has not yet given Brown & his agent permission to facilitate a trade. It’s in the team’s hands— Ian Rapoport (@RapSheet) January 27, 2019
Ignoring the speculative parts of Rapoport’s tweets, it is interesting to note that he claims the Steelers have not officially given Rosenhaus permission to try and trade his client, even if he does seem to suggest it is the desired option.
If Brown is to remain in Pittsburgh 2019, it will be no thanks to those in the local media who appear to be going out of their way to bait him as of late. When it is not the radio talk shows trashing his name on air, it is senior beat reporters taunting him on social media.
The idea of a fresh start with a new team where the local media doesn't hate him must seem increasingly appealing to Brown right now.