Antonio Brown's Week 4 sideline tirade had roots in Steelers' Week 3 anthem decision
Brown was unhappy with Ben Roethlisberger and the decision to stay in the tunnel in Week 3
Steelers receiver Antonio Brown made waves last Sunday after attacking a cooler on the sidelines and yelling at coaches and teammates early in the victory over the Ravens, an incident that wasn't solely rooted in football, according to sources with knowledge of the situation.
Brown has been at odds with quarterback and team captain Ben Roethlisberger recently in the aftermath of a highly-charged series of events dating back to the Steelers' decision to stay off the sidelines for the national anthem in Chicago two weeks ago. Roethlisberger spearheaded a decision to reverse course and have the players remain in the tunnel rather than on the sidelines as originally intended, which was the topic of an emotional team meeting the following day. During that meeting, sources said, Brown expressed his displeasure with how Roethlisberger and others handled the matter, and there was some lingering resentment through the week.
Sources said Brown has felt strongly the urge to kneel in protest during the anthem, but the Steelers have been in unison standing or remaining off the field during the playing of it. Sunday, when the quarterback did not throw to him early in the game,when he was wide open for a possible TD, Brown took it personally and believed it was related to his recent dispute with Roethlisberger, according to the sources, which led to his sideline blow-up.
While it didn't look good last Sunday, the Steelers won the game and Brown saw plenty of the ball. He has also been one of the most heavily targeted receivers in the NFL this season. The issue isn't expected to flare back up and the Steelers' players and officials have been working behind the scenes to quell some of the saw emotions from the situation in Chicago and keep players together.
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