The Pittsburgh Steelers are out of Latrobe and back at the UPMC Rooney Sports Complex, also referred to as the South Side Facility. We are already into the regular season, where everything is magnified and, you know, actually counts. The team is working through the highs and lows and dramas that go through a typical Steelers season.
How are the rookies performing? What about the players that the team signed in free agency? Who is missing time with injuries, and when are they going to be back? What are the coaches saying about what they are going to do this season that might be different from how it was a year ago?
These are the sorts of questions among many others that we have been exploring on a daily basis and will continue to do so. Football has become a year-round pastime and there is always a question to be asked, though there is rarely a concrete answer, as I’ve learned in my years of doing this.
Question: Would the Antonio Brown situation be different if he were not palling around with the likes of Terrell Owens?
I think we have literally heard from about 20 people so far about what Antonio Brown is thinking—more than what we have heard directly from Brown himself, though he has at least suggested that he feels underappreciated by the organization, saying they were “indifferent” to him.
So far, we have seen Brown hanging around with James Harrison, Chad Johnson, and now Terrell Owens. None of these are new associations—we’ve heard about them in the past, and Harrison had been a teammate of Browns for most of his nine-year career, so that’s certainly not a surprise.
All of these people are individuals who made spectacles of themselves and/or caused disruptions for their teams, none more so than Owens, who was forced to move from team to team despite literally being one of the five greatest receivers in NFL history.
Anything they have to say about how to conduct yourself probably should be taken with a grain of salt at best, but Brown appears to be actively seeking their counsel. Owens yesterday described himself as a mentor to Brown—now, we don’t know if Brown would use the same term to classify his relationship, but it’s a scary thought all the same.
It’s a bit of a chicken and egg situation. Was Brown drawn to these characters because of his own character, or was his character created or exacerbated by the influence of this group of ‘mentors’ that he has surrounded himself with? Answering that question helps provide the answer to the question of the day.