The relationship between the Pittsburgh Steelers and receiver Antonio Brown appears to be deteriorating.
Could the Eagles step in and help it come to an end?
While the chances seem slim, a recent report that the Steelers feel Brown cares too much about his individual stats has led Pro Football Talk’s Mike Florio to write that he wouldn’t rule out the Steelers moving on from Brown this offseason.
The recent leak to NFL Network reporter Aditi Kinkhabwala, who is embedded with the Steelers, that the team believes Brown cares too much about his statistics and that he was “pouting” after the first touchdown of Sunday’s loss to the Patriots could be regarded as a deliberate effort by the team to slide Brown toward the trading block.
The report is the latest drama between Brown and the Steelers.
Following the Steelers’ win over the Kansas City Chiefs, Brown posted a Facebook Live video of the team’s locker room, a decision that caused head coach Mike Tomlin to say incidents like that are why “great players move from team to team.”
A quote that should grab attention of Eagles top personnel Howie Roseman.
One of the Eagles’ biggest needs is at receiver, a position Roseman has said they will address this offseason. Now that they have a quarterback in Carson Wentz on the roster that they can build around, adding better receivers for him to throw it too is priority No. 1 inside the NovaCare Complex.
Brown would fill that need in a big way, as he is arguably the best receiver in the league, and finished last season with 106 catches for 1,284 yards and 12 touchdowns.
What makes the possibility of the Steelers trading Brown is that he is entering the final year of his contract, and wants to get paid like one of the best receivers in the league.
If the Steelers truly are souring on Brown, this offseason would be their last chance to get something for him, before seeing him walk away next season as a free agent if they are not willing to invest big money in him — which they presumably wouldn’t be if they really do view him as selfish and a distraction.
If that is the road the Steelers go down, the Eagles would be foolish to not at least call the Steelers and see what they would ask in return for Brown in a trade.
The price will likely begin with a first-round pick, and if multiple teams get in on the bidding war, it could go even higher.
The Eagles would have to decide just how much they wanted to give up for Brown in terms of assets, knowing they would then also have to turn around and give the receiver a big deal. Brown being 28-years old, and 101 games into his career, makes that decision complicated even if he is one of the best receivers in the league.
If Brown really is on the market, however, and the Eagles get a chance to add him to their roster, they will have to think long and hard about doing whatever it takes to land the Pro-Bowl receiver.