Several high ranking executives are concerned about the precedent of Antonio Brown forcing his way off the Pittsburgh Steelers this offseason with his trade to the Oakland Raiders.
Brown wanted a new contract the Steelers were never going to give him.
“It’s a problem. Other star players see this and might want to do the same,” one source said. “I know the Steelers had a difficult situation and needed to get rid of him. But they had other options.”
Pittsburgh had Brown under contract for three more years at a total of $38.925 million.
“It was a very un-Steeler-like move,” one source said.
“He was crazy enough to pull this off,” one veteran agent said. “Most guys aren’t wired that way. The contracts and rules are in place.”
Le'Veon Bell also went down an unconventional path to accomplish his goals, which included higher guarantees.
“I’ve seen too many injuries not to value that,” Bell said. “I’ve seen the Steelers pretty much cut Troy Polamalu, a future Hall of Famer. [Polamalu retired with two years left on his contract.] AB did what he felt was best for him. My situation was different, but we both wanted to get our fair value. That’s what every player wants.”