They say that winning is a cure-all. Although that is not quite true, it is certainly a salve that can calm a wound. A loss can wipe away that salve, and a player dealing with frustration could suddenly have a moment of weakness in which he exposes himself. That appears to be what happened with the Baltimore Ravens on Sunday.
While he quickly deleted the Tweet after posting it, second-year wide receiver Marquise Brown seemed to take his frustrations over not receiving targets to Twitter following Baltimore’s 28-24 loss to the 7-0 Pittsburgh Steelers.
Just an hour or so after the game was over, Brown Tweeted, “what’s the point of having souljas when you never use them (Never!!)”. He deleted it a short time later, as mentioned, but it already spread far enough by that point that it would not be forgotten, and it’s no surprise that it was brought to head coach John Harbaugh’s attention.
“I promise you, we’re trying to use all of our guys; he knows that”, he told reporters yesterday, adding that he’s “probably a little frustrated, but he’s not a selfish guy. I don’t believe he is for one second. If he was, he wouldn’t play as hard as he did or be the good guy that he is around the building every single day. So, I have a lot of trust in him, and the fact that he took it down, I appreciated that”.
During Sunday’s loss to the Steelers, Brown was targeted all of two times on Lamar Jackson’s 28 pass attempts during the game. He caught one pass for a three-yard touchdown early in the fourth quarter, which gave the Ravens a 24-21 lead at the time.
It should be noted that Brown was targeted at least six times in each of the team’s first six games of the season, and still leads the team with 44 targets on the year. His 27 receptions and 379 receiving yards also rank tops on the team, the former by five and the latter by over 100. Tight end Mark Andrews has five touchdowns, but no other player has more than two receiving scores.
Brown, who is the cousin of Tampa Bay Buccaneers headache-in-development Antonio Brown, was taken in the first round of the 2019 NFL Draft by the Ravens. As a rookie last season, he caught 46 passes for 584 yards and seven touchdowns, ranking second in all of those categories only to Andrews, who was a Pro Bowler.
For the record, no, I don’t think Brown is suddenly going to be a problem in their locker room, and he was just speaking from frustration. But I know virtually nothing about him and the team, or how he handles adversity. He has only experienced five losses, including the postseason, since entering the NFL, and is not used to losing a big regular season game.