Pittsburgh Steelers training came is officially underway, as things continued in Latrobe on Thursday. In the last few days, defensive lineman Cam Heyward and former quarterback Ben Roethlisberger have gone back and forth on a few comments.
Before including the upcoming quote from ESPN‘s Brooke Pryor, it’s important to preface the question that was asked leading up to Heyward’s answer. WDVE’s Mike Prisuta asked what the red flags are about having me-first players on a team.
“If you’re taking off your pads in the middle of a game, we’re gonna have a problem,” Heyward said via Pryor’s video on Twitter. “It hasn’t happened on this team, I don’t think it will. I love AB [Antonio Brown] to death, but he wasn’t doing that here. We have plenty of guys that would’ve handled that.”
Heyward, of course, is referring to when Brown took off his pads and walked off the field in a middle of a game against the New York Jets in January. That led to the Tampa Bay Buccaneers parting ways with him, for obvious reasons. It was an incident that, well, we’ve really never seen before, especially in the pros.
There’s some truth to Heyward’s comments, as head coach Mike Tomlin helped keep things civil in Pittsburgh for several years, despite multiple players filled with drama and attitude. Those Steelers teams were also led by savvy veterans like Roethlisberger, Heyward, Joe Haden, and others.
Now if you’re wondering why Prisuta specifically asked about the “me-first” players, well that’s been the hot topic of debate between Heyward and Roethlisberger the past few days. Roethlisberger mentioned that’s the problem with the modern-era players, which Heyward admitted rubbed him “the wrong way.” Roethlisberger has since (tried) cleared things up by saying he should have been more clear with his initial comments on “me-first” players.
Brown spent nine seasons in Pittsburgh, one of the best stretches by a wide receiver of all-time. That is, a seven-time Pro Bowler and four-time All-Pro selection. Brown did get a Super Bowl ring with Tom Brady and the Buccaneers in 2020. To this day, it remains a mystery as to how head coach Tomlin kept Brown under control for so long.
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