Mike Tomlin deserves more credit for surviving Antonio Brown

Mike Tomlin deserves more credit for surviving Antonio Brown

After Antonio Browns’ dramatic and public exit from the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, many look back at his somewhat quieter tenure with the Pittsburgh Steelers.

Antonio Brown may have played his last snap in the NFL in Week 17 of the 2021 season. After a reported sideline disagreement with Tampa Bay Buccaneers head coach Bruce Arians, Brown left the field, but not before ripping off his jersey and shoulder pads. After the game, Arians said that the wide receiver was no longer a member of the Buccaneers.

It is yet another ugly exit for Brown, who has had quite a few during his time in the NFL. But when looking back, some on Twitter were praising Mike Tomlin for his work with Brown during the wide receiver’s nine years with the Pittsburgh Steelers.

Mike Tomlin receiving praise for dealing with Antonio Brown for nine seasons

This is not to say that Tomlin perfectly handled Brown’s behavior, because that is far from the case. The end of the wide receiver’s tenure in Pittsburgh was highlighted by being disciplined for posting Tomlin’s postgame locker room speech on Facebook, ticketed for speeding, and sued for allegedly throwing furniture off the balcony of his Florida apartment.

But, as mentioned in the tweets above, Tomlin managed to deal with Brown’s behavior and got him to produce on the field. That led to the team being dominant in the AFC North for the majority of his time with the team. Yet, he still forced his way out of the Steel City in an ugly exit.

Ever since he was traded to the then-Oakland Raiders in 2019 is when Brown was a frequenter of the national spotlight. Brown never played a single game for the Raiders due to a tumultuous preseason, highlighted by him holding out over a helmet and a reported argument with general manager Mike Mayock. Just before the start of the regular-season, the Raiders released him.

Brown then joined the New England Patriots immediately after his departure from Oakland. His tenure would last just one game, as he was released by the team as the league began investigating allegations of sexual assault, which was settled in early 2021.

The wide receiver would not return to the NFL until midway through the 2020 season after serving an eight game suspension for multiple violations of the personal conduct policy. Brown signed with the Buccaneers that year and won his first Super Bowl title. In 2021, Brown was suspended three games by the NFL after they discovered that he submitted a fake COVID-19 vaccine card. Despite that, he returned to the team, as they lost Chris Godwin for the season to a torn ACL. Two weeks later, he walked out of MetLife Stadium.

That is just a glimpse of the controversies surrounding Brown. You can take a look at the full timeline of incidents Brown was involved in in the past three years in the tweet below, courtesy of ESPN Stats and Info.

All eyes will continue to be on Brown. Whether his NFL career will resume after the Buccaneers debacle remains to be seen.

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