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Thread: Mark Madden: Raiders finding out Antonio Brown is exactly as advertised

  1. #11
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    Bill Cowher: 'We know too much' about Antonio Brown, someone who 'likes to see his name in the media'

    The former Steelers coach thinks that less is more when it comes to the embattled Brown

    by Bryan DeArdo

    Antonio Brown will never play for Bill Cowher, who retired as the Steelers' head coach four years before Brown's rookie season in Pittsburgh. But if he was still coaching, and if he had Brown on his team, Cowher knows how he would handle the situation.

    Cowher, a current NFL analyst for CBS Sports who served 15 seasons as Pittsburgh's head coach, was recently asked about Brown, who continues to be at the center of the NFL news cycle after forcing his way out of Pittsburgh this offseason. Over the past two weeks alone, Brown has been dominating the headlines with stories about his mysterious absences from Raiders camp, his frostbitten feet to his reported retirement threat if he would not be allowed to use his old Steelers helmet (Brown lost his appeal and will return to the Raiders this week).

    "I think we know too much [about Brown]," Cowher said during an interview with CBS Sports HQ. "I think too much was made out of [his trade from Pittsburgh]. I think every time he does something … he's a guy that likes the attention.

    "Really, I think when you talk about his play on the field, he's a very good receiver," Cowher continued. "And I think in today's transparent world, social media, he likes to see his name in the media, he likes the attention. I just think if you're coaching a guy like that, you kinda just hope he doesn't become a distraction from the standpoint of saying something to the opponents. If he's on your team, let him do his thing as long as he's out there and producing as he's getting paid to do."

    Cowher didn't hesitate with his answer when asked why the receiver position seems to be the one that creates the most self-centered football players.

    "Fantasy football," Cowher said. "I think fantasy football has made that position and has created a kind of selfishness and a way for us to judge players. It's hard for them not to look at that … I think, when you talk about a team sport yet we're talking about individuals wanting to have specific numbers. I think fantasy football has made that position a lot more, I would say, divisive for a team from the standpoint of they're looked upon a little bit differently than offensive linemen or defensive linemen or any other player besides quarterbacks ... running backs, obviously because they get touches. So I just think fantasy football has created more of an individual sport when it really is a team sport."

    Cowher -- who coached during the more formative years of fantasy football -- had the luxury of coaching Hines Ward, an unselfish receiver who put team success over his own individual success. While Ward did retire as Pittsburgh's career leader in catches, yards, and touchdowns, he did not compile the same type of numbers that other receivers of his era -- Terrell Owens, Randy Moss, Marvin Harrison -- compiled on their way to the Pro Football Hall of Fame, a distinction that Ward has yet to receive.

    Ward did, however, retire with two Super Bowl rings and was named the MVP of Super Bowl XL. Owens, Moss, and Harrison combined to win one Super Bowl between them and were never named the MVP of a Super Bowl.

    Does Cowher see any elite receivers in today's game that share Ward's mindset?

    "I think there are [some]," Cowher said. "I think they're out there. Listen, look at the role Larry Fitzgerald has dwarfed into from the time that he was originally the guy you threw the ball up to and he became now the Hines Ward when Bruce Arians was in Arizona. What made Hines a special receiver was the fact that he did it all. He blocked, he played the slot, he made plays down the field. He was there every week, never missed games. And he brought a degree of toughness and an element to our football team that really exemplified what we were about. We asked receivers to block, just like we asked running backs to block as well. There are only so many balls to go around, so there was philosophy in place. We were a team that threw the ball early but we ran the ball late because we had a lead.

    "Sometimes, [Ward's] numbers were not what they could have been because that just wasn't our offense," Cowher continued. "So that's why, when you go back to the numbers, the fantasy football, I know when I was coaching, I was probably not the best team to pick in terms of offensive football for fantasy players, because we were more interested in winning games than having big numbers. And I think not only did Hines buy into that, but he also exemplified that."

    Another player Cowher discussed was Ben Roethlisberger, who won a Super Bowl with Cowher in 2005, Big Ben's second NFL season. Cowher, who will return to Pittsburgh on Sept. 29 for his induction into the Steelers' Hall of Honor, is expecting a big season from Big Ben in 2019.

    "I think he looks pretty good," Cowher said of Roethlisberger, who is embarking on his 16th NFL season. "When you see him in training camp, I think he looks like he's in shape. His biggest thing is not to try to do too much. Because it's very natural to want to show that 'Hey, we can still win without Antonio Brown and without Le'Veon Bell. And I can still spread the ball around.' Just be careful you don't try to do too much. I think that would be the biggest thing for him. I still think he can make all the throws, he can still get around, move around, and he still has a great feel for the game."

    While he will continue to follow his former team, Cowher said that he is also going to keep his eye on what he believes will be a "very intriguing" division race in the AFC North.

    "You talk about (new Cincinnati Bengals coach) Zac Taylor, kind of this newness about him and what he's going to do with that football team," Cowher said. "They've got some skill.

    "Obviously, the expectation up in Cleveland with Baker Mayfield. Now under the radar, the Pittsburgh Steelers, no more drama with Antonio Brown and Le'Veon Bell. And (Baltimore Ravens quarterback) Lamar Jackson going into his second year. The AFC North, in general, is going to have a lot of intrigue."

    https://www.cbssports.com/nfl/news/b...-in-the-media/

  2. #12
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    Antonio Brown will never play for Bill Cowher, who retired as the Steelers' head coach four years before Brown's rookie season in Pittsburgh. But if he was still coaching, and if he had Brown on his team, Cowher knows how he would handle the situation.
    I was looking forward to this answer.

    "I think we know too much [about Brown]," Cowher said during an interview with CBS Sports HQ. "I think too much was made out of [his trade from Pittsburgh]. I think every time he does something … he's a guy that likes the attention.
    OK - if we know too much about Brown, then I guess Cowher is saying he'd try to keep him out of the spotlight as much as possible?


    I just think if you're coaching a guy like that, you kinda just hope he doesn't become a distraction from the standpoint of saying something to the opponents. If he's on your team, let him do his thing as long as he's out there and producing as he's getting paid to do."
    Nope, looks like he's saying he'd treat Brown the same way that Tomlin did. Let him do whatever he wants, as long as he's producing on the field and then HOPE he doesn't become a distraction.

  3. #13
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    Managing Antonio Brown is essential to relaunching Jon Gruden's coaching career

    JERRY BREWER
    The Washington Post
    AUG 14, 2019

    When Antonio Brown arrived at training camp in a hot-air balloon, Jon Gruden laughed and tried to cozy up to a new reality.

    “I expect a lot more drama from No. 84,” the Oakland Raiders coach said last month of his newly acquired superstar wide receiver. “I really do.”

    How prescient. And unsurprising. And ominous.

    As eccentric as Brown can be, Gruden couldn’t have predicted the strange types of drama he already has presented. Frostbitten feet? An existential crisis over a new helmet? Brown is every bit the headache that the Steelers traded. And if we can assume the healing of his feet — which Brown colorfully described as “circumcised” and “born again” during the most recent HBO “Hard Knocks” episode — the 31-year-old figures to remain the ultra-productive playmaker who has finished with no fewer than 101 receptions, 1,284 yards and eight touchdowns in his past six seasons.

    Gruden, the old coach who traded the best of his new tricks during his disastrous NFL return last season, deserves the headache. He acquired Brown partly because his decisions had left the roster desperate for a player capable of making a superstar impact. Now, he needs a fruitful relationship with the diva receiver to erase the notion that his coaching style and tastes have become too antiquated for the modern NFL.

    That was the concern coming into the 2018 season, after Gruden signed a 10-year, $100 million contract and resurrected his coaching career after nine years in television. It’s amazing that Gruden is still just 55, but while his energy and charisma are intact, there was either something off about his team-building feel last season, or his torch-the-roster actions as the coach/unofficial GM in Year 1 were necessary to expedite the improvement of a Raiders team that had talent but no flexible route to sustained success.

    A year ago, Gruden and the Raiders traded their best player, outside linebacker Khalil Mack, rather than persist during a complicated contract negotiation. It seemed like a premature deal, shipping Mack to Chicago for two first-round picks. The Bears went on to pay Mack record-setting money for a defensive player, and he made their defense dominant again.

    Back in Oakland, Gruden alternated between defending the decision and grumbling about lacking a pass rush. Then in the middle of the 2018 season, he traded another prominent player, receiver Amari Cooper, to Dallas for a first-round draft pick.

    It led to jokes that Gruden managed to make the Bears and Cowboys playoff teams while watching his own squad go 4-12. And it contributed to the perception that this version of Gruden — older and even pickier — cannot tolerate today’s stars, which would guarantee the failure of his ballyhooed reunion with the Raiders.

    The truth probably resides in a gray area. But now Brown is here to provide the greatest test of the coach’s patience and ability to bring out the best in entitled star players. Finding a way to manage Brown is now essential to the relaunching of Gruden’s career. It is the most important player-head coach relationship he has ever had.

    On the surface, that might seem like too grand a statement. Gruden turned Rich Gannon into an MVP during his first stint in Oakland. He won a Super Bowl with Tampa Bay after gaining the trust of a defense-centric locker room full of characters and future Hall of Famers. He’s currently tasked with fixing talented quarterback Derek Carr. Nevertheless, the Brown-Gruden dynamic rises to most significant because Brown is so mercurial a personality (ask Steelers coach Mike Tomlin), so electric a player and so capable of elevating or ruining a team. And Gruden, no longer a sure thing, could set back the franchise’s rebuilding process — and his personal, out-of-retirement validation — if this partnership ends badly.

    Brown is also a truth teller; many of his issues with the coddling of Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger were spot on, even though he chose inappropriate methods to express discontent. To coach Brown, Gruden must be at his best. It requires being tough but flexible. It requires the delicate balance of appreciating Brown’s attributes — legendary work ethic, artful route running, impeccable hands — while massaging his issues and being prepared to handle absurd situations. And Gruden must do this after trading draft capital for Brown and guaranteeing him $30 million in a new contract.

    The fact that Brown reportedly considered retirement and walking away from all the money over his displeasure with new NFL helmets should scare the Raiders. But to his credit, Gruden dealt publicly with the situation as well as any coach could. He defended the receiver during his temporary absence from the team and his NFL grievance. It could mean much to building trust.

    “I support this guy,” Gruden said late last week. “I think that’s what needs to be said.”

    Gruden also properly channeled his frustration over Brown’s feet. He is frustrated about the situation and loss of preseason time, but he’s compassionate toward his player.

    “I don’t know what anybody’s writing or anybody thinks, but this foot injury wasn’t his fault,” Gruden said. “This was a total accident. It really wasn’t his fault, and it’s a serious injury. I know some people are smarting at it, but it’s really not a laughing matter. The guy was hurt. He’s innocent. He didn’t do anything wrong.”

    They’re an odd couple, Brown and Gruden. With the Raiders using the draft and going young, the receiver is also a peculiar fit on the roster. Brown is here to be a security blanket for Carr. He’s also here because Gruden is too competitive to endure a rebuild without taking a few risks to circumvent a long process.

    If Gruden can make it work with Brown, he will catch up to this game that supposedly passed him by. He won’t be the old coach who stayed away for too long. Brown has his born-again feet. Getting through to him would be Gruden’s born-again feat.

    https://www.post-gazette.com/sports/...s/201908140086

  4. #14
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    Antonio Brown gets sued by chef over unpaid Pro Bowl food bill

    Posted by Mike Florio on August 14, 2019, 9:47 PM EDT

    Raiders receiver Antonio Brown will eventually know his way around the legal system, whether he wants to or not.

    Brown, according to ESPN, has been sued for nearly $40,000 by a chef who claims that Brown failed to pay a Pro Bowl-week bill

    Stefano Tedeschi, who calls himself “The Sports Chef,” has filed suit against Brown in Florida for a $38,521.20.

    Tedeschi alleges that Brown rented an Orlando-area mansion and then hired Tedeschi to provide cooking services over multiple days, including parties at the mansion.

    Attorney Darren Heitner told ESPN, “We expect to be filing a motion to dismiss the complaint and will let the filing speak for itself.”

    Brown settled a lawsuit earlier this year arising from claims that he threw furniture off a Miami balcony, nearly hitting a toddler and his grandfather. Brown recently was sued for allegedly stiffing a trainer.

    Brown also isn’t afraid to file legal claims; he essentially sued the NFL over his desire to wear an outdated helmet. He lost, but an unexpected loophole has allowed him to wear the same helmet, if models made within the last 10 years can be recertified and reconditioned.

    https://profootballtalk.nbcsports.com/2019/08/14/antonio-brown-gets-sued-by-chef-over-unpaid-pro-bowl-food-bill/
    Steeler teams featuring stat-driven, me-first, fantasy-football-darling diva types such as Antonio Brown & Le'Veon Bell won no championships.

    Super Bowl winning Steeler teams were built around a dynamic, in-your-face defense plus blue-collar, hard-hitting, no-nonsense football players on offense such as Hines Ward & Jerome Bettis.

    We don't want Juju & Conner to replace what we lost in Brown & Bell.

    We are counting on Juju & Conner to return us to the glory we once had with Hines & The Bus.

  5. #15
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    Quote Originally Posted by hawaiiansteel View Post
    Managing Antonio Brown is essential to relaunching Jon Gruden's coaching career

    JERRY BREWER
    The Washington Post
    AUG 14, 2019

    When Antonio Brown arrived at training camp in a hot-air balloon, Jon Gruden laughed and tried to cozy up to a new reality.

    “I expect a lot more drama from No. 84,” the Oakland Raiders coach said last month of his newly acquired superstar wide receiver. “I really do.”


    “I don’t know what anybody’s writing or anybody thinks, but this foot injury wasn’t his fault,” Gruden said. “This was a total accident. It really wasn’t his fault, and it’s a serious injury. I know some people are smarting at it, but it’s really not a laughing matter. The guy was hurt. He’s innocent. He didn’t do anything wrong.”


    If Gruden can make it work with Brown, he will catch up to this game that supposedly passed him by. He won’t be the old coach who stayed away for too long. Brown has his born-again feet. Getting through to him would be Gruden’s born-again feat.

    https://www.post-gazette.com/sports/...s/201908140086
    Gruden is trying to be supportive of Brown as he can, but when he says the foot injury wasn't his fault, that isn't true. Brown has either used the cryotherapy chamber before or as it was pointed out in a previous article, the people who attend the chamber tell people who use it, that they have to wear protective footwear and take precautions.

    Brown either completely ignored the warnings, or just let it go in one ear and out the other. He recklessly used the cryotherapy chamber In a similar manner as he recklessly drove 130 mphs or whatever on a parkway, and recklessly threw furniture from a window. Just as he recklessly and thoughtlessly posted video of himself in the locker room with Tomlin speaking in private manner to team. He's not interested enough to pay attention to the rules or what effect his actions will have later.

    It does look it will be a long season in Oakland, but interesting.

  6. #16
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    yeah..long season....4-12 or 5-11.
    From the 2010-2018 season, (An 8 year period that the majority of Cowher's players & coaches had left) Mike Tomlin has only won 3 playoff games. And two of those wins were against back up Quarterbacks. Our history has been defined by what we do in the postseason; not the regular season.

  7. #17
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    Bettis: Antonio Brown Drama Not New, Was Tough to Deal With

    The Antonio Brown drama isn't anything new, Jerome Bettis says; it's just that now the spotlight is on him

    THE DA SHOW
    AUGUST 15, 2019

    (CBS Sports Radio) -- Antonio Brown did not play in Week 17 last season, even though it was a must-win game for the Pittsburgh Steelers. Since then, he’s been in the news seemingly every week, seemingly never for a positive reason.

    Did Brown simply change as a person over the last year?

    “I think his viewpoint of Pittsburgh changed, obviously,” Steelers legend and Hall of Fame running back Jerome Bettis said on The DA Show. “I don’t think he changed. He was a tough guy to deal with, but he was a great player. Make no mistake about it: he was the same player he’s always been, the same person. But obviously with the issues that he had, he wanted to make a change. Is that right or wrong? Hey, that’s up for everyone to decide. But he felt he was ready to go. When a player is ready to go like that, you’ve got to let him go because he will destroy the continuity of the football team. So you got to let him go, you pick up the pieces and you keep moving.”

    Still, there have been more AB stories over the last nine months than in his first nine NFL seasons combined. Did the Steelers simply keep his shenanigans under wraps all this time?

    “There wasn’t a lot of issues,” Bettis said. “He was doing his job. There were obviously things he was doing here in Pittsburgh – it wasn’t significant, so it’s not going to be brought to the forefront. But when you put him in the public eye like this, now anything that he does becomes significant. I don’t think that was the case (in Pittsburgh). All those minor blips on the radar screen, they were able to be looked at as small issues and things that you can work through.

    “But there was some things that happened when he was here,” Bettis continued. “They didn’t make a big issue of them, and the public didn’t make a big issue of them because, hey, he was having success and they were winning. Now everything has changed because he made the big issue to be traded, he was traded, and now he’s in the spotlight more. So I don’t think it’s him changing; his situation has changed.”

    D.A. wondered if the relationship between Brown and Ben Roethlisberger was just that bad.

    “I wish I could tell you,” Bettis said. “I wasn’t in the locker room. I have no idea. But here’s what’s telling for me: When it’s one-sided like that, that’s strange. If you don’t have a good relationship with somebody, usually both guys know about it. When Ben came out and said, ‘I don’t know where this is coming from,’ that just strikes me as being strange. Usually if I don’t like you and you don’t like me, we both know about it. That’s what was strange for me when all this stuff came out.”

    https://937thefan.radio.com/articles...was-tough-deal

  8. #18
    Legend

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    Anthony Galaviz

    @agalaviz_TheBee

    "Hard Knocks" third episode delivered 772,000 viewers for its Tuesday premiere night, per HBO spokesman. The top-rated market was in Pittsburgh. HBO said the ratings among HBO homes in the Pittsburgh market were more than three times ahead of the national average. #Raiders

    Aug 21, 2019

    https://twitter.com/agalaviz_TheBee?...on-hard-knocks

  9. #19
    Pro Bowler

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    I think the Raiders and Jets are going to have huge ratings. Steelers will tune in to hate watch.

  10. #20
    Hall of Famer

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    Quote Originally Posted by hawaiiansteel View Post
    Anthony Galaviz

    @agalaviz_TheBee

    "Hard Knocks" third episode delivered 772,000 viewers for its Tuesday premiere night, per HBO spokesman. The top-rated market was in Pittsburgh. HBO said the ratings among HBO homes in the Pittsburgh market were more than three times ahead of the national average. #Raiders

    Aug 21, 2019

    https://twitter.com/agalaviz_TheBee?...on-hard-knocks
    Tune in Pittsburgh for Comedy Tuesdays...exclusively on HBO.

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