“Y’all know that ain’t happening.”
Those aren’t my words. Those are Steelers’ head coach Mike Tomlin’s from a 2022 appearance on The Pivot Podcast discussing the chances of former Pittsburgh wideout Antonio Brown playing another down for the Steelers.
Although that podcast happened over a year ago, it’s fair to assume that Tomlin’s words still ring true regarding Brown’s latest series of posts on X, formerly known as Twitter.
The Steelers are in need of receiver help following an injury to Diontae Johnson in Sunday’s loss to the 49ers, and the peak of Brown’s career was indisputably the best of any Pittsburgh wideout in franchise history. But that’s about as far as Brown re-signing with the Steelers makes sense, if any of it did in the first place (it did not).
Mike Tomlin has publicly dismissed the notion. Brown has been out of the league since 2021 and has constantly been in the news for various legal issues. And let’s not forget that his last NFL appearance ended with this:
In honor of Jets vs. Buccaneers today, throwback to when Antonio Brown left mid game pic.twitter.com/El1MzV6oB7— Blake (@blakenyjets) August 19, 2023
Despite any online hype, Antonio Brown to the Steelers will not be happening. And as insane and funny as that conversation is, it’s still a tragic reminder of the downfall of what was once a surefire Hall of Fame career. Brown’s NFL days are likely behind him, but hopefully, he can still manage to get his life back on the right track.
Mike Tomlin summed it up the best in his 2022 podcast appearance, noting, “What I’ll say about AB is this, man. We had nine great years. I appreciate that dude in ways that I can’t explain to y’all.” Still, Tomlin made it clear that a Steelers reunion is not going to happen. “He’s moved on, and we’ve moved on. We can sit around and chop that up and pretend like that’s a realistic conversation, but we know that’s not realistic.”
What is realistic is that the Steelers face the Browns on Monday night, and without Diontae Johnson, the Steelers will need another wide receiver to step up in his place. Whether that’s Gunner Olszewski, a promotion from the practice squad, or an outside addition, make sure to stay tuned to BTSC for the latest Steelers news as gameday draws closer.