Mike Tomlin made one thing crystal clear about Martavis Bryant’s status. He’s not going anywhere.
Speaking with the media at his typical Tuesday press conference, Tomlin said the Pittsburgh Steelers are not trading him.
“He’s not available via a trade,” Tomlin said.
Last week, Steelers’ President Art Rooney II said the same thing. Bryant told ESPN Monday that he “wanted out” if he did not get more involved in the Steelers’ offense. Through seven games, Bryant has recorded 18 catches for 234 yards and one touchdown.
But Tomlin was critical of Bryant’s comments about JuJu Smith-Schuster Sunday evening.
“He was out of bounds with some of his actions in terms of the things he said on social media. It will be dealt with appropriately so. That ball is in my court. I haven’t visited him yet. To be honest, I haven’t visited him yet because I’ve had bigger fish to fry. The preparation and overall readiness getting ready for this opportunity, the Detroit Lions, really takes precedent.
Bryant missed yesterday’s practice due to an illness which Tomlin deemed “excused.”
On Sunday, Bryant threw Smith-Schuster under the bus, saying the rookie was “no where near better” than Bryant and that Bryant needed to be more involved in the offense.
Tomlin echoed Ben Roethlisberger’s comments from earlier today about still being open and willing to work with Bryant.
“We’ve invested a lot,” Tomlin said. “We’ve covered a lot of ground. It’s obvious we still got more ground to cover with him because we’re having a conversation about him that’s not football related.”
He fielded a few questions from the media about Bryant but predictably did not go into specifics. Tomlin noted Bryant had a great week of practice last week and that “it’s only a matter of time before it shows up on the field.”
While Bryant has not been a major part of the offense, limited in snap count and still trying to work his way back after missing all of last year and half of training camp, Tomlin said the process by which Bryant is airing his grievances is incorrect.
“It’s irrelevant whether or not his grip is legitimate. The means of which he’s going about it is inappropriate. It creates situations like this where I’m wasting time out of my day fielding questions from you guys.”
The Steelers have today off and will return to practice tomorrow. They’ll travel to Detroit to face the Lions Sunday night.