Antonio Brown Dares Steelers to Trade Him

Antonio Brown has challenged the Pittsburgh Steelers to trade him in response to criticism over his offensive impact this season.

Ryan Scarpino, who worked on the Steelers' public relations team between 2010 and 2017, lit the fuse on Monday, when he suggested Brown could count himself lucky for playing alongside Ben Roethlisberger.

In a scathing tweet, Scarpino suggested Brown would not have produced the figures he has recorded since arriving in the NFL had he not been playing alongside such a talented quarterback.

"AB needs to thank his lucky stars, because he was drafted by a team that had Ben," he argued. "And Ben got AB paid. You know darn well he wouldn't put up those numbers for other teams."

Brown's response did not take long. "Trade me [and] let's find out," he replied.

The Steelers did not publicly comment on his stance but linebacker Bud Dupree suggested his teammate doesn't want to be traded and his response to Scarpino was simply a way to let off steam.

"You know how AB is, especially after a loss like that," Dupree told reporters. "Guys are going to say things. He just wants to help the team win as much as he can. We know he'll be ready. He does great things there. He always knows we got him."

Pittsburgh guard David DeCastro also spoke about Brown's tweet but hinted nobody in the Steelers' locker room was particularly worried about it.

"I think it'd be easier for all of us to worry about football," he said when asked about player's involvement on social media. "But this is the day and age."

The Steelers drafted Brown in 2010 and he has recorded over 1,000 yards in each year, with the exception of his rookie season and of the 2012 campaign. The 30-year-old has developed into one of the league's best wide receivers and has recorded over 100 receptions in each of the last five seasons, during which he has been a Pro-Bowl selection.

On Sunday, Brown put up 67 receiving yards on nine catches and 17 yards as the Steelers fell to a 42-37 loss at home against the Kansas City Chiefs.

If Brown has benefitted from playing alongside Roethlisberger, the opposite is also true. The Steelers quarterback has thrown for over 4,000 yards in four of the eight seasons since Brown was drafted in 2010, a threshold he had passed just once in the six previous campaigns.

Furthermore, Roethlisberger only narrowly missed out on throwing for 4,000 yards in 2015 and 2016 when he recorded 3,938 and 3,819 yards respectively.