Antonio Brown’s unexcused absence from practice with the Pittsburgh Steelers in Week 17 has been well covered since the season ended, but it would appear that was not the only time the team’s star receiver went missing in 2018. If veteran beat reporter Ed Bouchette of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette is to be believed, Brown was AWOL on two other occasions last season, with both absences covered up by the team.
Appearing as a guest on the Dan Patrick Show, Bouchette claimed that AB had actually left the Steelers three times in total over the course of the year.
“He left the team three times. Once for a week in training camp that they covered up. They said he had an injury and he really didn't. Once on a Monday after they lost to Kansas City and he threw a fit on the sidelines and didn't show up Monday, and then at the end of the season.”
The full interview can be heard here.
Had the Steelers tried to address the issue when it first happened, fans can only wonder if all the team’s problems with Brown in Week 17 could have been avoided, and perhaps talk of a trade might never have existed. But even if these insight had come to light at the time, it is hard to imagine that Pittsburgh would have admitted the problem.
However, given Considering the Steelers agreement to trade their star receiver after his meeting with Art Rooney II on Tuesday, this latest insight only serves to further damage the receivers trade value at this stage in the proceedings. And until Brown finds a new home, the front office must be hoping that the local beat reporters can keep these stories to themselves for the next few weeks at least.