The Pittsburgh Steelers faced a myriad of injuries in 2015, but the one injury which could have made a huge difference for the team when it mattered most was the concussion to Antonio Brown which kept him out of the lineup in the team's playoff loss to the Denver Broncos in the Divisional round of the AFC Playoffs.
Brown hasn't spoken publicly since suffering the concussion on a hit by Cincinnati Bengals linebacker Vontaze Burfict in the Wild Card round of the playoffs, but recently spoke with 93.7 The Fan in Pittsburgh to talk about the hit which knocked him out, Adam Jones' accusations of him faking the injury and how close he was to playing against the Broncos.
So, how close was Brown to playing? Not very.
"I didn't have a chance," he said. "Man, I wish I could have been out there with my teammates. I'm living with regrets that we could have been in the Super Bowl."
That regret will stick with Brown for a long time, at least until the 2016 season officially gets underway, but it also won't change his attitude about the hit which sidelined him.
"I feel like guys don't want to stop me no more," Brown said. "They want to take me out. They want to kill. They want to steal my dreams. They want to ruin me. They want to end me. We're not going to let them. We're going to win more."
When asked if Burfict is known for his comments on the field, Brown didn't get specific with his answer, but did mention how the hit was uncalled for. "Every guy talks, man. When you do something like that, you hit a guy after the play, a defenseless guy in the helmet. There are a lot of things that aren't right about that."
Then of course came the questions about Adam Jones. You can imagine how he might feel about a man who claims he faked an injury which had him struggling with his balance a week after the hit. Did he reach out to him other than on social media?
"The guy texted me," Brown said. "No reply. I don't even know why people give him the platform. Ridiculous."
For Bengals fans, they found the Steelers' loss to the Broncos as poetic justice, but for Pittsburgh, and Antonio Brown, they will have to live with the same regrets, as they watch the team who beat them compete in Super Bowl 50.
Hear the interview below: