2019 Steelers: The More Things Change...

dcmissle

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This might be the time that philosophy is the wrong play.
I’d have been tempted to kick the tires on Brian Flores, which would have made things really interesting all around. Arians maybe?

But I don’t believe in lopping heads for its own sake.
 

Fred in Lynn

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We’ll see. If things don’t change, nobody is minding the store.

Playing a Rooney for a second, I’d have been tempted to fire Tomlin and call Roethlisberger in to underscore that he works for me not vice versa. Be a good teammate and stay in your lane.

But firing people is not a solution unless you have somebody in the wings who would be better. And historically, the Steelers are loathe to churn HCs.
The problem is you’re playing a Rooney. I don’t have many issues with how Tomlin handles the locker room. I would have been tempted to fire him because I don’t think he’s the best of in-game coaches. It’s tiring to watch Tomlin and staff test Einstein’s mantra on insanity. In my hell, they continually line up in a zone defense while Brady gains 9 yards at a clip on quick slants. Tomlin is simply not great at adapting during a game. The Brown fiasco is the price for giving your players a long leash, but on balance, I think players like playing for a coach who isn’t on them constantly as long as they’re showing up and doing their jobs.
 

Fred in Lynn

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Dez Bryant is the same age, and he tore his achilles last year with the Saints in his second practice. He held out for a one-year, 1.25m contract.

I'm not excusing him for his behavior, and I don't expect anyone to feel sorry for him. I'm pretty sure AB feels the same.

Colbert came out three weeks ago and called Roethlisberger the unquestioned leader of the team. They're going to give Big Ben an extension. Maybe I am missing it, but I haven't heard anyone else in support. James Harrison said he didn't know how unprepared the Steelers were under Tomlin until he played in new England. If the problems really don't extend beyond Brown, then where are all the voices in support of Tomlin and Big Ben?
Why would players make public declarations after that?

I’m not clear about what you think the reason was for Brown demanding a trade. Did Brown want out because he didn’t like how Ben treated him, how Tomlin treated the situation (I don’t think it was silly for him to punish Brown for walking out of practice before the last game and not showing up again), because he was concerned the $70M he’s earned so far wouldn’t carry him the rest of his life, or what?

To emphasize: I don’t think the serious problems extend beyond Brown and Bell (and with Bell it was primarily that he kept teasing everyone - including his teammates - about his return). There will always be prima donnas and personality conflicts, but that locker room did just fine before and it will again. At the end of the day, they know they have to show up to do their jobs and get over the little stuff. That wasn’t Tomlin’s first year, it was his 12th. It’s an anomaly, not a trend or indicative of something deeper. (The issue with Tomlin is whether he’ll ever substantially improve as an in-game coach. THAT is the criticism I have of him and why I wouldn’t have minded had they cut bait.)

Since it’s a Steeler topic: I thought Colbert’s comment was plain stupid, and disrespectful to all the other guys that do their jobs as the professionals they’re supposed to be. Stupid. However, Brown committed his mutiny before that and long after it was known Brown was on the block, so I’m not sure why you’re mentioning it here.

James Harrison has made it his post-NFL career mission to bad-mouth the Steelers, so his comments don’t surprise me. He was cut because he wanted it, because he didn’t like not getting starting reps ahead of Dupree and Watt. He might not have liked it, but it was completely justified to have him backing up the other two. Something obviously happened behind the scenes, or maybe it was just JH being JH. After all, the motivation in his persona is all about being disrespected. That’s what motivated him throughout his career. Oh well. As a fan, I disagree with the continual negative comments, which make him luck petty, but cut him a break. He did a lot for that franchise.

As for Ben, I find the stories that he’s a prima donna completely plausible. The drama a few years ago when he claimed he might retire was annoying. I’m sure he wasn’t just an innocent bystander in the Brown situation. But he apparently does the things that don’t cause a coach to have to act publicly, such as showing up on time and doing one’s job. If he would have walked out and done the same thing Brown did, they’d have traded him, too. The Steelers wouldn’t have had to just settle for the return of getting him off the roster, though, because as a QB he’s immensely more valuable. That’s life in the NFL. I think Roethlisberger has to do better. I suspect his role in his was similar to my kids, when one instigates enough so that the other throws a punch, then pretends he was attacked for no reason. His transparent comments feigning confusion over Brown throwing a football at him seem slightly fabricated. The drama is strong in that one. But he shows up on time, does his job, and is far and away the most valuable player on the team. #NFLlife

Sorry for the length. Long train ride.
 
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Al Zarilla

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Why would players make public declarations after that?

I’m not clear about what you think the reason was for Brown demanding a trade. Did Brown want out because he didn’t like how Ben treated him, how Tomlin treated the situation (I don’t think it was silly for him to punish Brown for walking out of practice before the last game and not showing up again), because he was concerned the $70M he’s earned so far wouldn’t carry him the rest of his life, or what?

To emphasize: I don’t think the serious problems extend beyond Brown and Bell (and with Bell it was primarily that he kept teasing everyone - including his teammates - about his return). There will always be prima donnas and personality conflicts, but that locker room did just fine before and it will again. At the end of the day, they know they have to show up to do their jobs and get over the little stuff. That wasn’t Tomlin’s first year, it was his 12th. It’s an anomaly, not a trend or indicative of something deeper. (The issue with Tomlin is whether he’ll ever substantially improve as an in-game coach. THAT is the criticism I have of him and why I wouldn’t have minded had they cut bait.)

Since it’s a Steeler topic: I thought Colbert’s comment was plain stupid, and disrespectful to all the other guys that do their jobs as the professionals they’re supposed to be. Stupid. However, Brown committed his mutiny before that and long after it was known Brown was on the block, so I’m not sure why you’re mentioning it here.

James Harrison has made it his post-NFL career mission to bad-mouth the Steelers, so his comments don’t surprise me. He was cut because he wanted it, because he didn’t like not getting starting reps ahead of Dupree and Watt. He might not have liked it, but it was completely justified to have him backing up the other two. Something obviously happened behind the scenes, or maybe it was just JH being JH. After all, the motivation in his persona is all about being disrespected. That’s what motivated him throughout his career. Oh well. As a fan, I disagree with the continual negative comments, which make him luck petty, but cut him a break. He did a lot for that franchise.

As for Ben, I find the stories that he’s a prima donna completely plausible. The drama a few years ago when he claimed he might retire was annoying. I’m sure he wasn’t just an innocent bystander in the Brown situation. But he apparently does the things that don’t cause a coach to have to act publicly, such as showing up on time and doing one’s job. If he would have walked out and done the same thing Brown did, they’d have traded him, too. The Steelers wouldn’t have had to just settle for the return of getting him off the roster, though, because as a QB he’s immensely more valuable. That’s life in the NFL. I think Roethlisberger has to do better. I suspect his role in his was similar to my kids, when one instigates enough so that the other throws a punch, then pretends he was attacked for no reason. His transparent comments feigning confusion over Brown throwing a football at him seem slightly fabricated. The drama is strong in that one. But he shows up on time, does his job, and is far and away the most valuable player on the team. #NFLlife

Sorry for the length. Long train ride.
I don’t follow any other team than the Patriots much (what I read here and a sojourn over to a message board like Steelerfury when things get to boiling over about another team). Anyway, I was surprised on NFL Network this morning to hear the talking heads going on about Ben and Eli, QBs of two teams that have lost big offensive talent. They were saying that Eli has never thrown teammates under the bus (Ben has) but Eli is not strong enough to “reel in” a teammate when he’s straying (OBJ). I thought they laid off that stuff, or, the Ben stuff is so much out there that they can’t ignore it?
 
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DennyDoyle'sBoil

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I don’t follow any other team than the Patriots much (what I read here and a sojourn over to a message board like Steelerfury when things get to boiling over about another team). Anyway, I was surprised on NFL Network this morning to hear the talking heads going on about Ben and Eli, QBs of two teams that have lost big offensive talent. They were saying that Eli has never thrown teammates under the bus (Ben has) but Eli is not strong enough to “reel in” a teammate when he’s straying (OBJ). I thought they laid off that stuff, or, the Ben stuff is so much out there that they can’t ignore it?
It's weird being a Patriots fan and trying to interpret all this.

There are a lot of alphas in every room in the NFL. And that causes friction in sometimes unexpected ways where not everyone makes completely rational decisions or where sports analysts get a lot to talk about in sometimes conflicting ways. We just don't really have that in New England. There is one top dog and everyone knows it. To the point where it's major news when the other biggest name in the locker room gets a pliability expert that he wants to be his caddy and there is momentary friction.

I just don't think for most of us we really have much of an idea how significantly things have changed in the NFL in the last 19 years and how weird it's going to get when Josh is in charge and worrying about stuff like this is actually something we have to do. And so that makes it kind of hard when hearing these guys pontificate not always consistently about these weird dynamics and frictions.
 

bradmahn

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Why would players make public declarations after that?

I’m not clear about what you think the reason was for Brown demanding a trade. Did Brown want out because he didn’t like how Ben treated him, how Tomlin treated the situation (I don’t think it was silly for him to punish Brown for walking out of practice before the last game and not showing up again), because he was concerned the $70M he’s earned so far wouldn’t carry him the rest of his life, or what?

To emphasize: I don’t think the serious problems extend beyond Brown and Bell (and with Bell it was primarily that he kept teasing everyone - including his teammates - about his return). There will always be prima donnas and personality conflicts, but that locker room did just fine before and it will again. At the end of the day, they know they have to show up to do their jobs and get over the little stuff. That wasn’t Tomlin’s first year, it was his 12th. It’s an anomaly, not a trend or indicative of something deeper. (The issue with Tomlin is whether he’ll ever substantially improve as an in-game coach. THAT is the criticism I have of him and why I wouldn’t have minded had they cut bait.)

Since it’s a Steeler topic: I thought Colbert’s comment was plain stupid, and disrespectful to all the other guys that do their jobs as the professionals they’re supposed to be. Stupid. However, Brown committed his mutiny before that and long after it was known Brown was on the block, so I’m not sure why you’re mentioning it here.

James Harrison has made it his post-NFL career mission to bad-mouth the Steelers, so his comments don’t surprise me. He was cut because he wanted it, because he didn’t like not getting starting reps ahead of Dupree and Watt. He might not have liked it, but it was completely justified to have him backing up the other two. Something obviously happened behind the scenes, or maybe it was just JH being JH. After all, the motivation in his persona is all about being disrespected. That’s what motivated him throughout his career. Oh well. As a fan, I disagree with the continual negative comments, which make him luck petty, but cut him a break. He did a lot for that franchise.

As for Ben, I find the stories that he’s a prima donna completely plausible. The drama a few years ago when he claimed he might retire was annoying. I’m sure he wasn’t just an innocent bystander in the Brown situation. But he apparently does the things that don’t cause a coach to have to act publicly, such as showing up on time and doing one’s job. If he would have walked out and done the same thing Brown did, they’d have traded him, too. The Steelers wouldn’t have had to just settle for the return of getting him off the roster, though, because as a QB he’s immensely more valuable. That’s life in the NFL. I think Roethlisberger has to do better. I suspect his role in his was similar to my kids, when one instigates enough so that the other throws a punch, then pretends he was attacked for no reason. His transparent comments feigning confusion over Brown throwing a football at him seem slightly fabricated. The drama is strong in that one. But he shows up on time, does his job, and is far and away the most valuable player on the team. #NFLlife

Sorry for the length. Long train ride.
Tomlin's infinity leashes with AB and Bell produced the toxic events the last two years. I don't think Tomlin will change the approach that's produced this fiasco, given Colbert's doubling down on the stratification in that locker room with his comments regarding the alleged rapist.
 

Michelle34B

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Aug 2, 2006
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Why would players make public declarations after that?

I’m not clear about what you think the reason was for Brown demanding a trade. Did Brown want out because he didn’t like how Ben treated him, how Tomlin treated the situation (I don’t think it was silly for him to punish Brown for walking out of practice before the last game and not showing up again), because he was concerned the $70M he’s earned so far wouldn’t carry him the rest of his life, or what?

To emphasize: I don’t think the serious problems extend beyond Brown and Bell (and with Bell it was primarily that he kept teasing everyone - including his teammates - about his return). There will always be prima donnas and personality conflicts, but that locker room did just fine before and it will again. At the end of the day, they know they have to show up to do their jobs and get over the little stuff. That wasn’t Tomlin’s first year, it was his 12th. It’s an anomaly, not a trend or indicative of something deeper. (The issue with Tomlin is whether he’ll ever substantially improve as an in-game coach. THAT is the criticism I have of him and why I wouldn’t have minded had they cut bait.)

Since it’s a Steeler topic: I thought Colbert’s comment was plain stupid, and disrespectful to all the other guys that do their jobs as the professionals they’re supposed to be. Stupid. However, Brown committed his mutiny before that and long after it was known Brown was on the block, so I’m not sure why you’re mentioning it here.

James Harrison has made it his post-NFL career mission to bad-mouth the Steelers, so his comments don’t surprise me. He was cut because he wanted it, because he didn’t like not getting starting reps ahead of Dupree and Watt. He might not have liked it, but it was completely justified to have him backing up the other two. Something obviously happened behind the scenes, or maybe it was just JH being JH. After all, the motivation in his persona is all about being disrespected. That’s what motivated him throughout his career. Oh well. As a fan, I disagree with the continual negative comments, which make him luck petty, but cut him a break. He did a lot for that franchise.

As for Ben, I find the stories that he’s a prima donna completely plausible. The drama a few years ago when he claimed he might retire was annoying. I’m sure he wasn’t just an innocent bystander in the Brown situation. But he apparently does the things that don’t cause a coach to have to act publicly, such as showing up on time and doing one’s job. If he would have walked out and done the same thing Brown did, they’d have traded him, too. The Steelers wouldn’t have had to just settle for the return of getting him off the roster, though, because as a QB he’s immensely more valuable. That’s life in the NFL. I think Roethlisberger has to do better. I suspect his role in his was similar to my kids, when one instigates enough so that the other throws a punch, then pretends he was attacked for no reason. His transparent comments feigning confusion over Brown throwing a football at him seem slightly fabricated. The drama is strong in that one. But he shows up on time, does his job, and is far and away the most valuable player on the team. #NFLlife

Sorry for the length. Long train ride.
I meant there were no players responding to Colbert's praise of Ben Roethlisberger.

Antonio Brown's actions were indefensible, and I don't condone any of it. I don't know the reason Brown wanted a trade, but none of his antics would have warranted a suspension without pay, and he ended up being the highest paid WR. If I had to guess, it was for the reason I mentioned Dez Bryant. Dez Bryant was released last April, signed 1 yr/$1.25m with the Saints week 7, and tore his achilles in his second practice. He didn't want to risk the chance of serious injury taking away the leverage he held now. He's a hell of a lot better than Dez Bryant, but they are the same age.
 

Fred in Lynn

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Tomlin's infinity leashes with AB and Bell produced the toxic events the last two years. I don't think Tomlin will change the approach that's produced this fiasco...
I disagree in the criticism of Tomlin’s style. The players are paid professionals, and it’s perfectly reasonable to expect them to show up prepared and ready to do their jobs without micromanagement. Call me crazy, but most adults justifiably appreciate that sort of treatment. If they take advantage of the situation, then that’s on them. I can’t be the only one who approaches my own job, and by extension the jobs of NFL players this way.

I do agree that Tomlin won’t change his locker room approach, and I don’t think that’s bad. The bad part is that I still don’t think he’s that great at preparing for games, and I don’t think he is good at all at adapting schemes within games. However, the idea that there’s going to be dissent in the locker room over this come August is an anti-Steeler wet dream. I’d acknowledge it if it thought the argument had merit. People move on so they can function effectively, and while I think many in the locker room who are happy Brown got what he wanted, many probably feel betrayed. What’s the point for them in letting it linger?

Lastly, Tomlin never had Brown-like problems with Bell. He and Brown are apples to oranges. The issue with Bell from Tomlin and teammates was that he kept the striptease over his potential return going all year long. I’m sure they wished he were there but it’s his prerogative not to show up when he hasn’t signed a contract. Tomlin addressed it in the media saying he would only care when Bell walked back in the room. Brown walked out on his team when they had to win to have a chance to make the playoffs - You don’t think that’s different?
 

Cellar-Door

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I disagree in the criticism of Tomlin’s style. The players are paid professionals, and it’s perfectly reasonable to expect them to show up prepared and ready to do their jobs without micromanagement. Call me crazy, but most adults justifiably appreciate that sort of treatment. If they take advantage of the situation, then that’s on them. I can’t be the only one who approaches my own job, and by extension the jobs of NFL players this way.
I don't agree with this. At most jobs, including the NFL, you are expected to be at work on time and there are consequences if you are not. And most adults 100% do not appreciate treatment where a select few employees don't have to follow the rules, but the rest do. Go to just about any workplace and the easiest way to kill morale is to pick favorites and have a separate set of rules and discipline for them.
 

tims4wins

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I don't agree with this. At most jobs, including the NFL, you are expected to be at work on time and there are consequences if you are not. And most adults 100% do not appreciate treatment where a select few employees don't have to follow the rules, but the rest do. Go to just about any workplace and the easiest way to kill morale is to pick favorites and have a separate set of rules and discipline for them.
Right. Yes, they are paid professionals, and yes, it is reasonable to expect them to show up prepared and ready to do their jobs... but when they DON'T - which is clearly what happened with Brown - Tomlin did NOTHING until it was too late.
 

Fred in Lynn

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I don't agree with this. At most jobs, including the NFL, you are expected to be at work on time and there are consequences if you are not. And most adults 100% do not appreciate treatment where a select few employees don't have to follow the rules, but the rest do. Go to just about any workplace and the easiest way to kill morale is to pick favorites and have a separate set of rules and discipline for them.
I agree with what you wrote, but you’re describing Brown. Roethlisberger apparently always shows up to meetings and follows the team rules.

I think I’d be more inclined to argue that Ben isn’t the best of teammates. He almost certainly gaslights teammates at times, such as when he pretends he has no idea why Brown could be mad or hints at retirement because he doesn’t like his OC. It’s passive-aggressive nonsense. But these aren’t team rules and the coach isn’t a parent. I think you’re conflating personality traits and adherence to team rules. They’re not going to walk away from their most valuable player because he’s not friendly to everyone. They would if he continually flaunted team rules.
 

Fred in Lynn

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Right. Yes, they are paid professionals, and yes, it is reasonable to expect them to show up prepared and ready to do their jobs... but when they DON'T - which is clearly what happened with Brown - Tomlin did NOTHING until it was too late.
Maybe, but maybe not. It’s hard to know whether he should be debited because he waited until Brown was a monster that couldn’t be contained or whether he should be credited for dealing with the situation for several years when they were able to extract massive on-field production from him. I think others contributed to the problem, but this is an Antonio Brown personality trait that led to the final outcome.
 

tims4wins

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Maybe, but maybe not. It’s hard to know whether he should be debited because he waited until Brown was a monster that couldn’t be contained or whether he should be credited for dealing with the situation for several years when they were able to extract massive on-field production from him. I think others contributed to the problem, but this is an Antonio Brown personality trait that led to the final outcome.
I guess. AB produced, but in his 8 years as a starter the Steelers won 3 playoff games. Seems to be a pretty universal feeling that the Steelers have come up short over that time frame.
 

Vinho Tinto

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He’s not a good guy or teammate. It’s been a consistent theme his entire career. He’s not ever changing, but I’m sure I’ll once again see stories declaring otherwise.
 

Fred in Lynn

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I guess. AB produced, but in his 8 years as a starter the Steelers won 3 playoff games. Seems to be a pretty universal feeling that the Steelers have come up short over that time frame.
Among those ignorant of the limits in analyzing small sample sizes, perhaps. Also, it was 5 wins in 11 games spread out over 8 years.

Again - Did Tomlin’s handling of Brown extend Brown’s usefulness to the team or shorten it? The Tootsie Pop Owl doesn’t know, either.
 

tims4wins

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Among those ignorant of the limits in analyzing small sample sizes, perhaps. Also, it was 5 wins in 11 games spread out over 8 years.

Again - Did Tomlin’s handling of Brown extend Brown’s usefulness to the team or shorten it? The Tootsie Pop Owl doesn’t know, either.
Yeah I wasn't counting 2010 since AB was like their 4th or 5th receiver behind Ward, Sanders, Mike Wallace, and Randle-El.

Tomlin might have extended AB's usefulness, but the point is that it didn't lead to any meaningful team success. The FB live thing happened after the 2016 season AFCCG. The Steelers won precisely zero playoff games after that point with AB.

Yes, it is SSS. But even if they got 2 more good years out of AB - it didn't do them any good, and it might have even cost them.
 

Michelle34B

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AB had two huge catches his rookie year in the playoffs.



Antonio's cousin Marquise Brown is in the draft this year. Do it, Steelers!

Colbert, Tomlin, and Roethlisberger have been at this for a while with success, I love AB as a player so it is hard for me to do so. This is probably the toughest offseason since the one following the 2009 season. They traded former Super Bowl MVP Santonio Holmes for a 5th.

Santonio...Antonio...buyer beware if they draft a WR named N'tonio.
 

Fred in Lynn

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Yeah I wasn't counting 2010 since AB was like their 4th or 5th receiver behind Ward, Sanders, Mike Wallace, and Randle-El.

Tomlin might have extended AB's usefulness, but the point is that it didn't lead to any meaningful team success. The FB live thing happened after the 2016 season AFCCG. The Steelers won precisely zero playoff games after that point with AB.

Yes, it is SSS. But even if they got 2 more good years out of AB - it didn't do them any good, and it might have even cost them.
This is nuts. Considering that the Steelers have never gone the big-name FA route, that the return on draft picks obtained in a hypothetical 2016 trade would have been highly unlikely to immediately produce at an All-Pro rate, and that the numbers I’m about to present are historic, I think it’s safe to say that 200+ catches, 2,900 receiving yards, and 24 TDs in 29 games over those 2 years was far more than whatever would have replaced him in a trade. There’s a zero percent chance they would have been better on the field without him. Death is less certain. To wit, there’s a zero percent chance they will be better on the field without him in 2019. However, the walkout before Week 17 and all the subsequent earth-scorching changed the calculus.

If you believe Brown was a ticking time bomb, then you’d be more likely to credit Tomlin for making it work while they bled a cash cow. If you believe Brown was a victim of those around him, then you’d be more likely to blame Tomlin for not controlling the locker room and leading to Brown’s departure.
 

tims4wins

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They wouldn’t have replaced the production, no. Obviously. But they might have had better chemistry and more team success.
 

Super Nomario

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They wouldn’t have replaced the production, no. Obviously. But they might have had better chemistry and more team success.
I don't think it's fair to hold Brown responsible when most of their issues are on the defensive side. It's not like they struggled to score; their secondary has been a disaster. That's not on Brown.
 

BigJimEd

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I don't think it's fair to hold Brown responsible when most of their issues are on the defensive side. It's not like they struggled to score; their secondary has been a disaster. That's not on Brown.
I agree with this but think the point still stands. If they had traded him then they would have had picks and money to spend.
In hindsight l think it is obvious the Steelers should have moved him then. But that's with the benefit of hindsight, I don't know enough details to know if they should have recognized it at the time.
 

Super Nomario

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I agree with this but think the point still stands. If they had traded him then they would have had picks and money to spend.
In hindsight l think it is obvious the Steelers should have moved him then. But that's with the benefit of hindsight, I don't know enough details to know if they should have recognized it at the time.
I'm all for moving overpaid receivers but Brown has been criminally underpaid basically his entire career. This year his dead money hit for Pittsburgh ($21.12 MM) will be more than 50% higher than his cap hit any year he actually played for them (max: $13.62 MM). Brown's not the issue. It's a Bill Jamesism that blaming your best players for the organization's failures is something dysfunctional teams do.
 

Fred in Lynn

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I'm all for moving overpaid receivers but Brown has been criminally underpaid basically his entire career. This year his dead money hit for Pittsburgh ($21.12 MM) will be more than 50% higher than his cap hit any year he actually played for them (max: $13.62 MM). Brown's not the issue. It's a Bill Jamesism that blaming your best players for the organization's failures is something dysfunctional teams do.
He was two years into a 4/68M contract when he was traded. He was given a 5-year contract extension a mere two years into his career worth a 8.5M average annually. He was paid quite nicely compared to the market for a WR of his caliber. Anyway, the idea that his 2017 meltdown was caused by financial concern is bullshit. That was a narrative fabricated after the fact by Brown.

The 2019 dead money hit is a factor of converting past roster bonuses and base salary to signing bonuses, so they could free up cap space and sign/retain more of their own players. Also, his maximum payment from the team in any given year was just short of 20M in 2017.

Who blamed Brown for the Steelers’ failures in 2018? Just name a couple people in the organization who did this. Good luck, because that’s not what happened. Is it Jamesian to make things up? Don’t cite Bill James if you’re going to mangle information. It’s blasphemous.
 

bradmahn

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He was two years into a 4/68M contract when he was traded. He was given a 5-year contract extension a mere two years into his career worth a 8.5M average annually. He was paid quite nicely compared to the market for a WR of his caliber. Anyway, the idea that his 2017 meltdown was caused by financial concern is bullshit. That was a narrative fabricated after the fact by Brown.

The 2019 dead money hit is a factor of converting past roster bonuses and base salary to signing bonuses, so they could free up cap space and sign/retain more of their own players. Also, his maximum payment from the team in any given year was just short of 20M in 2017.

Who blamed Brown for the Steelers’ failures in 2018? Just name a couple people in the organization who did this. Good luck, because that’s not what happened. Is it Jamesian to make things up? Don’t cite Bill James if you’re going to mangle information. It’s blasphemous.
Damn, if this is how you treat allies of your arguments, I don't want to disagree with you. ;)

Reread SN's post and BigJimeEd's post he quotes. That Bill James paraquote and the salary cap context SN provided are in defense of the team not trading him earlier.

I think last year proved if the Steelers made a mistake in retaining anyone too long it was overpaying for Le'Veon when they could have taken advantage of the soft defensive fronts Roethlisberger and Brown exposed.
 

Rough Carrigan

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Marciano490

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InstaFace

MDLzera
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Even if every factual statement he made happened, it doesn't support his conclusion of intent over the null hypothesis of "Ben fucked up".
 

DrewDawg

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Bell took some shots at Big Ben in an SI article:

--said Ben was a factor in him leaving (but not only factor).
--said he didn't feel like Ben treated other players like they were on the same level.
--said Ben allows his preferences to guide how he plays (if he's mad at receiver, he may not throw him the ball as often).
 

tims4wins

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Mugsy's Jock

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Jealousy over not winning a team MVP award. Now where have I heard that before?

AB is such a total fucking asshole it takes some effort to remember what a terrific player he is.
 

NYCSox

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You're starting to see the real issue with Brown. He was the undisputed king of targets for a long time, usually at least 50% more than Bell and sometimes close to double the second place guy. Not to mention dominating all WR targets. That changed this year to a more even split with JuJu. And he did not like that one bit.
 
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EddieYost

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You're starting to see the real issue with Brown. He was the undisputed king of touches for a long time, usually at least 50% more than Bell and sometimes close to double the second place guy. Not to mention dominating all WR touches. That changed this year to a more even split with JuJu. And he did not like that one bit.
Not for nothing but I’m pretty sure he didn’t have more touches than Bell.
 

KiltedFool

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Per the Hitchhiker's Guide and divorcees everywhere, AB is now in an SEP field.

AB won't be able to shut up, and the lack of response from the Steelers will probably have a lot of people reevaluating their take on the whole sequence.
 

Cellar-Door

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Yeah Ramon Foster is a clown, he's their union rep and he spent all last year saying that Bell should just play for whatever he was offered because other guys on the team didn't make as much (including Foster).

That the "leaders" on that team are Ben Roethlisberger, Ramon Foster, and a Pouncey is why their lockerroom continues to be a tire fire.
 

mr_smith02

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This is the moment Tomlin can redeem himself as a head coach. The organization has turned the page on AB and Bell, Tomlin needs to mandate that the team ignore all the noise surrounding those two and focus on this team's goals for the season. The Steelers didn't get any better or worse because AB went to the Pats...it is a distraction the organization needs to ignore.
 

Red Averages

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I’m really not trying to troll at all here, but the last 3 posts were my recent update once I clicked the thread and to read them all back-back-back would rival Tom Emanski success.