Antonio Brown may have a little bit of a diva quality to him but now, it’s all business. A time to put the stats aside and focus on bringing another Lombardi Trophy into Pittsburgh.
He explained his mindset to reporters earlier today.
“Anytime you’re apart of the Steelers organization, you understand it’s about being a champion,” he said via Steelers.com. “It’s a championship culture, it’s a championship atmosphere. Championship team. All you gotta do is walk in here on the second floor and see those guy’s legacies on the wall.”
That’s certainly an aspect of the Steelers’ franchise that makes it so unique. There aren’t many places in the league where you can find six championship trophies in the same building you practice in every day.
Brown has more than had his fill of numbers. He’s going to rewrite all the franchise receiving record books. Four straight seasons of 100+ catches. Four straight years of at least 1250 yards. And 43 touchdowns over that span. You could already argue he’s the best receiver in franchise history, above Lynn Swann, John Stallworth, and Hines Ward.
But those three all have one thing Brown doesn’t – a Super Bowl ring. Gearing up for the playoff run, that’s Brown’s new goal.
“This is where the journey begins. The first round of it starts Sunday. I’m excited about the process. I’m prepared and looking forward for a great opportunity to go out and perform with my teammates.”
Brown will have to be involved more than he was in the first matchup to the Miami Dolphins, a 30-15 loss. That day, he caught just four passes for 39 yards as the Dolphins shut him down the entire day. It was their 2 Man defense that effectively bracketed Brown and was something we’ve written about reviewing that game. Brown mentioned anticipating facing a similar scheme this weekend.
“We’re going to get a lot of 2 Man in third down situations.”
I know we’ve repeated it ad nauseam but one of the crucial factors this time around will be moving Brown’s split and alignment in the formation to make it harder to limit his route tree, as Miami did in their win. That’s the first step to finally marching to – and hoisting – a Lombardi Trophy.