Either the interview with Pittsburgh Steelers wide receiver Antonio Brown that the team posted on its website was incomplete, or he gave a separate quote in another session. Associated Press reporter Will Graves appears to be the only one who actually asked him about his health, and in his response, he seemed to imply that he is in fact dealing with an injury.
Graves Tweeted Brown’s response when asked if he was hurt. “What do you want me to say?”, he replied. “You don’t care about my problems. You’re probably glad I got ‘em. So what do you want me to tell you? No one cares about my problems, they just care about the winning”.
Antonio Brown on if he’s hurt:
“What do you want me to say? You don’t care about my problems. You’re probably glad I got’em. So what do you want me to tell you? No one cares about my problems, they just care about the winning.”#Steelers
— Will Graves (@WillGravesAP) September 20, 2018
Fairly early on in training camp, the All-Pro wide receiver suffered a quadriceps injury that resulted in him missing the majority of camp, and prevented him from participating in any of the preseason games. He did not practice until the start of the regular season, but was not on the injury report for either of the two games played so far.
It was already assumed, though, that he was not participating at 100 percent. I wrote just yesterday, and after Sunday’s game, about where he was from a physical health standpoint, because it did not appear in the first two games as though he was as explosive as he has typically been.
If Brown is still dealing with a quadriceps injury, then it is an issue that is going on more than a month and a half now, and one wonders how long it will be before he is over it. Will it be a nagging issue all season, and if so, how much will that affect his performance?
This assumes that the response that Brown gave to Graves does indeed imply that he is still nursing a minor issue, but even if so, it is not one that is limiting him from participating in games or in practice. He played all but five of the team’s offensive snaps so far through two games, one of which was in the ‘victory’ formation.
While he has been targeted 33 times so far this year, he has caught 18 passes for 160 yards, including 93 yards and a touchdown in the season opener and 67 yards on Sunday. He caught nine passes apiece in each of the first two games.
Meanwhile, second-year wide receiver JuJu Smith-Schuster has been off to a good start. He also has 18 receptions on the season, including 13 on Sunday, and has posted 240 yards with one touchdown. He is currently fifth in the league in receiving yards.
Brown cleared the air and got a lot off his chest yesterday after finally addressing the media for the first time since last weekend prior to the game against the Kansas City Chiefs. Let’s hope that is the end of the emotional drama—and that the physical will soon be behind him as well.