With the Super Bowl week now underway in Atlanta, GA you can bet several people doing interviews on radio row these next few days will be asked about what’s going on currently with the Pittsburgh Steelers and specifically when it comes to the situation the team’s going through right now with wide receiver Antonio Brown. On Tuesday, former Steelers head coach Bill Cowher was a guest on the Tiki and Tierney radio show and after first being asked to give his thoughts on Super Bowl LIII, he was asked about the team he used to coach and what he thinks will and should ultimately happen with Brown.
“Let me capsulize the season as I saw it. I think this was a season where a lot of these close games they played in, they lost this year,” Cowher first explained. “They had some missed kicks, they had some turnovers, lost to some teams they probably shouldn’t have. So they lost their margin of error. I thought they played their best football down the stretch. They beat the New England Patriots. They go down to New Orleans (and played) a game they could have won – and probably should have won. So they fell short.
“Ultimately, I think a lot of frustration set in starting with all that frustration at the beginning from the season to Antonio at the end of the season,” Cowher continued. “I would like to think at this point that Mike Tomlin, Ben Roethlisberger and Antonio Brown come into a room, shut the door, and I would just say, ‘How did we get here? How did we get here? Where are we? And more importantly, we’ve done too much together. Can we move forward? Can we just be open about where we are? Can we move forward?’”
Cowher went on to then explain how he thinks Brown, quarterback Ben Roethlisberger and head coach Mike Tomlin might be able to move forward from an initial closed door meeting with each other.
“Maybe it starts with me if I’m the head coach,” Cowher explained. “I allowed this to get to this point. Ben, Antonio: can we move forward? Can we let bygones be bygones, the past be in the past? We all take separate responsibility for how this ended up being where it is now, being played out in public opinion in the public forum, which unfortunately is what’s happening. Let’s go and put everything aside. When we open up this door, history was too important to us to let this past season’s frustrations destroy what we’ve taken a long time to create.”
Later in the interview, Cowher was asked what he think might happen if the same kind of things were to resurface several weeks after the meeting between the three took place.
“Well, you know what, I think when you shut a door with three men that understand what’s at stake, if it does resurface, you understand what the circumstances are,” Cowher said. “I think I would lay it out; ‘Listen, if it’s something that shows up again, here’s what’s going to happen.’ So, I think just like anything else, make sure you lay out the expectation levels that you have for everyone. Start with yourself, first, and from there, moving forward, hold people accountable. You know what, accountability, maybe it’s been lost, we need to gather it back.”
Cowher sure makes it sound easy and it will now be interesting to see if the Steelers can manage to get Brown, Roethlisberger, Tomlin, and maybe even team president Art Rooney II, all in one room to discuss all that has happened since the final few weeks of 2018 and ultimately be able to have all involved be able to reconcile and move forward.
The Steelers now have a little less than seven weeks left before they’ll need to pay Brown a $2.5 million roster bonus that’s due him. Can they get things worked out with him before them? If they can’t, Brown might find himself with a different team as a result of a trade come the end of March.
The latest reports as of this past weekend stated that the Steelers have yet to give Brown and his representation the authority to work out a trade with another team and that certainly isn’t a shock. In the meantime, however, Brown certainly is doing his best at making it seem as though he’s looking forward to being shipped out of Pittsburgh via his social media actions that include him seemingly still having issues with Roethlisberger and perhaps even Tomlin as well.
You can listed to Cowher’s full interview below: