As you well know, we here at Steelers Depot are dedicated to writing about players who are no longer with the team, which is why I wrote about Craig Colquitt yesterday. Today, I have an article that talks about Le’Veon Bell, and if you thought you were going to get through the day’s reading without a piece on Antonio Brown, then you were sorely mistaken, because you’re actually reading it right now.
But you knew that before you clicked on the headline, so that’s on you.
Anyway, as the offseason rolls on and the sports world continues to have nothing to talk about, outlets are continuing to find more and more ways to fill that space. This being the start of a new decade at least allows us to reflect upon the past 10 years—a 10-year period that was unfortunately absent another Lombardi Trophy, though the Steelers came close at the start of the previous decade.
Last week, ESPN ran an article tying up some odds and ends about the past decade, such as the best and worst teams of the past 10 years, the best and worst coach (yes, the worst was Hue Jackson), the best and worst free agent signings…and the best fantasy player of the decade.
That’s where Antonio Brown comes in, because, even though he barely played in 2019, and had a limited role in 2010, he was the most valuable player in fantasy football over the course of the past 10 years, according to the article:
Brown had six consecutive seasons (2013-18) with at least 300 PPR fantasy points, one of only three players at any position in history with a streak that long. He was the game’s highest-scoring player overall in 2014 and second-highest in 2015. For the decade, Brown had a 101.8-PPR fantasy point advantage over the rest of his positional field, and on 22 occasions — nine more than any other wide receiver — reached the 30-point threshold. His scoring prowess helped raise the popularity of the zero-RB strategy, reminding that wide receivers can carry your team to fantasy success. He was the No. 1 overall pick on average in 2016, and was a top-six pick in 2015 (sixth), 2017 (third) and 2018 (fifth).
I’m not a fantasy football player and tend to reject it based on its concept—I don’t like the idea of rooting for an opposing team’s player just to personally benefit from it—so I don’t know much about fantasy football, but the above certainly makes it sound as though he was pretty good for a long period of time.
Of course, his stats tell you that. After all, he has six consecutive 100-catch seasons, producing over 1200 yards and at least eight touchdowns in each year, with his averages in each category being substantially higher than that. Brown was definitely exceptional. And then he became an exceptionalism. And now we’re on to the next decade.