Steelers' Mike Tomlin blasts 'foolish' and 'selfish' Antonio Brown video
Steelers star receiver apologizes, but still faces possibility of discipline from NFL
Following the Steelers' 18-16 victory over the Chiefs on Sunday night, Antonio Brown let his self-awareness curtain drop and decided to fire up a Facebook Live video from the locker room. He did so in the middle of a Mike Tomlin speech that was intended to fire up the Steelers players ahead of the AFC Championship against the Patriots.
Tomlin (and a player who sounded a lot like Ben Roethlisberger) referred to the Pats as "a-holes" and multiple people can be heard yelling about not letting the video get onto social media. Hello, irony, our old friend.
Roethlisberger referred to the video as "water under the bridge," but Tomlin is not being quite so friendly about the whole thing. He was fired up on Tuesday when asked about Brown's decision to broadcast from the Steelers locker room for 15 minutes or so, calling it "foolish" and "selfish."
"As a parent, as a member of the community I take that very seriously," Tomlin said, via Ed Bouchette of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. "I issue an apology in that regard."
"It was foolish of [Brown] to do that, selfish and inconsiderate," Tomlin added. "It was violation of our policy, league policy."
For his part, Brown apologized via Twitter late Tuesday night:
Brown could be fined by the NFL for firing up social media within 90 minutes of the game ending -- he had the Facebook live stream going before Tomlin even stopped talking to the team, obviously.
And he'll also be disciplined by the team, according to Tomlin, but the discipline will likely be internal, so we might not hear about it.
Tomlin: Will punish Antonio Brown, internally, and may be consequences from NFL in that regard.— Ed Bouchette (@EdBouchette) January 17, 2017
Tomlin also said he hadn't spoken with Brown about the video, although obviously he would bring it up once the two see each other this week.
There was an even more telling reference from the Steelers coach about Brown, too, considering Brown is only under contract for one more season and has is expected to become the highest-paid wide receiver in the NFL once he inks a new deal.
Tomlin: That's often why you see great players move from team to team. Don't want that to happen to Antonio Brown.— Ed Bouchette (@EdBouchette) January 17, 2017
Now, the big difference here is that Brown is an exceptional receiver and a critical piece of the Steelers offense. An awkward Facebook Live video and a bunch of penalty-inducing end-zone celebrations aren't ideal for the Steelers, but it's not going to stop them from backing up the Brinks truck for one of the best receivers in the game.
Don't be surprised, however, if this incident comes up in contract talks. For the sake of Brown and the Steelers, everyone hopes it's the last time it becomes an issue. If Brown lays an egg against the Patriots, he'll certainly hear about it again before then.
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