14 February, 2019
First it was Le'Veon Bell playing with the hearts of Steeler Nation, the subject of constant conflicting reports all year long on whether he'd ever report to the team.
Anyone taking the affirmative on gambling whether or not Antonio Brown would be back with the Pittsburgh Steelers for a 10th season in 2019 might be thinking that was a bad idea, particularly after Brown tweeted a farewell video to the fans of the Steelers Tuesday morning.
As far as that attention goes, the Philadelphia Eagles would be best served by just monitoring what happens next as the disgruntled Brown tries to force his way out of Pittsburgh with a trade request. When he tried to show up and play in the Week 17 game against the Bengals, coach Mike Tomlin refused the offer. Brown is one of the most reliable on-the-field receivers in football, but his penchant for drama off of the field is what has people talking.
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Some might have imagined the Patriots would steer clear of Brown trade anyway, especially considering the likely high asking price and the 30-year-old's propensity for causing headaches. As things currently stand, the Patriots rank No. 24 out of 32 teams in terms of salary cap flexibility, with about $15 million in available funds right now.
The big question as it pertains to the 49ers is this: Will a team that's already been burned multiple times by players with character concerns make a play for Brown?
Out of all the teams in the NFL, New England represents the greatest threat, year in and year out, to the Steelers winning their seventh Super Bowl. Maybe a move to the NFC will get him to be much less of a diva.