February 2019 - Pittsburgh Steelers Wiretap

Antonio Brown Not 'Angry' With Steelers, Still Wants Trade

Feb 28, 2019 9:10 AM

Antonio Brown isn't "angry" with the Pittsburgh Steelers, but he has maintained his desire to be traded.

Brown is officially on the trading block after meeting with Steelers brass earlier this month in South Florida.

Both parties agreed that it's best to work on a trade, though Kevin Colbert made it clear that the team wants "significant compensation."

Jeff Darlington/ESPN

Tags: Pittsburgh Steelers, Misc Rumor, Trade Rumor

Steelers Receiving Increased Interest On Antonio Brown Trade

Feb 27, 2019 11:31 AM

The Pittsburgh Steelers have received increase interest from rival teams in trading for Antonio Brown.

“Interest has grown,” said Kevin Colbert.

The Steelers and Brown have mutually decided to pursue a trade this offseason. 

“Ideally, you’ll like to trade him to someone you’d never play," said Colbert. "But if a team comes through with the best compensation you have to weigh that.”

Ian Rapoport/NFL.com

Tags: Pittsburgh Steelers, Misc Rumor, Trade Rumor

Chris Boswell Will Have To Compete For Job With Steelers

Feb 25, 2019 8:19 AM

Chris Boswell had a rough 2018 season and he'll have to compete to be the kicker for the Pittsburgh Steelers next season.

Boswell missed seven kicks and converted just 65% of his field goal attempts.

"The drop-off with Chris Boswell was surprising, disappointing and this is something that Chris shares with us like we share with him," Kevin Colbert said. "We believe that Chris Boswell has the ability to do better than he did, he has already proven that. He set a standard for himself in 2017, as a Pro Bowl player and last year statistically he was one of the worst kickers and that's a huge drop-off."

The Steelers have a bigger decision to make in regards to trading Antonio Brown, but the kicking situation remains fluid.

"As a young player we also believe that he can find his way out of that and we will support him in that attempt," Colbert said. "Does that mean that he won't have competition? Absolutely not. We signed a kid, Matt McCrane, when we put Boswell on reserve/injured and Matt did a nice job in that Cincinnati game kicking the field goals that helped us win that game. Could we add another young player into that mix? Sure. There will be competition for 'Bos.'"

Grant Gordon/NFL

Tags: Pittsburgh Steelers, Misc Rumor

2019 NFL Draft Mock Draft 2.0: Pre-Combine Edition

Feb 24, 2019 9:55 AM

By Jeff Risdon, RealGM

This edition has quite a few changes in player and draft slot from the first edition. Spending two weeks with NFL personnel evaluators at the Shrine Game and Senior Bowl gave me a better idea of how some prospects are viewed from the NFL ranks, and the changes here reflect that. Note that at this stage of the draft season, coaches are still getting their feet wet with most of the prospects. The Combine at the end of February into early March will provide even more clarity.

1. Arizona Cardinals: Nick Bosa, EDGE, Ohio State. Instant impact pass rusher who can play in a variety of roles and schemes. At this point, the only real question is his durability. Will that be enough to convince the Cardinals to look elsewhere? Right now, I don’t think it trumps Bosa’s game-changing potential.

2. San Francisco 49ers: Quinnen Williams, DT, Alabama. It’s hard to watch the 49ers devote yet another premium draft pick to the defensive line, but it’s also hard to ignore just how much Williams can help San Francisco where they really need it. Someone could trade up here to land Williams too.

3. New York Jets: Ed Oliver, DT, Houston. I expect Oliver to show out in Indy and revive the interest in him as the potential No. 1 overall pick. His ability to create pressure up the gut and make plays behind the line is exactly what the Jets need in a division with a diverse range of opposing QBs.

4. Oakland RaidersKyler Murray, QB, Oklahoma. Does it make sense for the Raiders to scrap Derek Carr? Probably not. But it’s so easy to see Jon Gruden being infatuated with all Murray can do and how it would allow the Raiders to change the dynamics of defending them. They’re in a good position to take such a risk, too.

5. Tampa Bay BuccaneersCody Ford, OT, Oklahoma. Ford is an instant starter at one of the tackle spots, which is both a credit to his rapid rise and an indictment of how badly the Buccaneers need the powerful help he can provide. 
6. New York Giants: Josh Allen, EDGE, Kentucky. What, no QB?! Not in this instance. Instead, GM Dave Gettleman opts to fortify the pass rush with the versatile Allen and buys another year with Eli Manning. His pass rushing prowess is a difference-maker. 
7. Jacksonville Jaguars: Dwayne Haskins, QB, Ohio State. This pick seems like a lock if Haskins remains on the board. The Jaguars sorely need to hit on a high-end QB, and Haskins has the pocket passing precision to pay off quickly. 
8. Detroit Lions: Clelin Ferrell, EDGE, Clemson. Ferrell checks the boxes the Lions want in upgrading the pass rush: he can line up in multiple spots and schemes and plays the run exceptionally well on his way to the QB. Lower ceiling than the pass rushers above him here but his ability to generate pressure on his own is underrated. 
9. Buffalo Bills: Jawaan Taylor, OT, Florida. I was surprised at the buzz around Taylor from scouts at the Senior Bowl. His athletic profile and potential is highly regarded and could easliy land him in Buffalo, where building around running QB Josh Allen and replacing free agents at both RT and RG are imperative. 
10. Denver Broncos: Drew Lock, QB, Missouri. Joe Flacco handles the reins until the live-armed Lock can take over. It’s a risky pick--Lock has real warts that must be smoothed--but could result in John Elway finally getting the QB position right. 
11. Cincinnati Bengals: Devin White, LB, LSU. This is a very common projection and that’s for good reason; the Bengals are typically one of the easiest organizations to read in terms of draft intentions. To quote The Cranberries, “Everybody else is doing it so why can’t we?”
12. Green Bay Packers: T.J. Hockenson, TE, Iowa. A do-it-all weapon who can quickly ingratiate himself to Aaron Rodgers for both his blocking and his receiving, this one should get the QB’s seal of approval. 
13. Miami Dolphins: Rashan Gary, DL, Michigan. A divisive prospect but one with a very high ceiling, Gary could help catapult the Dolphins defense with his athleticism and ability to get after the passer. 
14. Atlanta Falcons: Noah Fant, TE, Iowa. Atlanta appears to be a prime candidate to trade back, but “settling” for the freaky Fant should tickle Falcons fans’ fancy. Another versatile receiving weapon in an offense that is already hard to defend.

15. Washington: D.K. Metcalf, WR, Ole Miss. Currently built more like a defensive end than a wideout, the 6-4, 230-pound Metcalf proved he can play before his neck injury. The durability question keeps him out of the top 10, methinks. Washington doesn’t mind...
16. Carolina Panthers: Jonah Williams, OT, Alabama. Williams proved himself in big games, and his ability to adapt within a play and recover if initially beaten stand out. With the questions Carolina has at both tackle spots, adding a ready-made starter is a positive.

17. Cleveland BrownsBrian Burns, EDGE, Florida State. Pairing the lanky, speedy Burns with Myles Garrett would provide the Browns defense with even more ways to attack in new DC Steve Wilks’ scheme. I had OT Andre Dillard here for a long time before changing.

18. Minnesota Vikings: Greg Little, OT, Ole Miss. Little has loads of athletic potential but uneven results in pass protection. Vikings GM Rick Spielman bites the apple and hopes it tastes sweet in a year or two at a position where the team keeps hitting sour notes.

19. Tennessee Titans: Byron Murphy, CB, Washington. Murphy offers naturally instinctive stickiness in coverage and the ability to play outside or in the slot. He’s a player who could rocket way up from this range with a good week in Indy. 

20. Pittsburgh Steelers: Greedy Williams, CB, LSU. The Steelers search for a playmaking CB leads them to Williams, who offers length and speed to help bolster an uneven secondary. 
21. Seattle Seahawks: Jachai Polite, EDGE, Florida. If Frank Clark leaves in free agency, the Seahawks almost have to use this pick to address the pass rush. If Clark returns, that opens this pick up to other options, but Seattle would still need EDGE help. Polite brings sizzle off the edge.

22. Baltimore Ravens: Kelvin Harmon, WR, North Carolina State. The Ravens could do a lot worse to build around Lamar Jackson than selecting the physical, reliable Harmon. Aside from having great hands and running smooth routes, he’s an incredible blocker. 
23. Houston Texans: Garrett Bradbury, OC/OG, North Carolina State. The quest to upgrade the long-struggling offensive line in Houston turns to one of the most physical finishers in the draft and an instant starter at any of the three IOL positions for the Texans. 
24. Oakland Raiders (from CHI): N’Keal Harry, WR, Arizona State. Oakland uses the bounty from Amari Cooper to replace him with the supersized Harry, who moves quite well for a 6-6 receiver and can really help on 3rd downs and in the red zone. 
25. Philadelphia Eagles: Montez Sweat, EDGE, Mississippi State. His stiff-arm bull rush wowed in Mobile, and his game tape features more of his high football IQ and ability to bend the edge. He and Derek Barnett as the Eagles young edges would be fun to watch

26. Indianapolis Colts: Jerry Tillery, DT, Notre Dame. A powerful interior rusher with the ability to dominate (see the Michigan game), Tillery instantly reinforces the weakest point on the promising young Colts defense.
27. Oakland Raiders (from DAL): Devin Bush, LB, Michigan. Bush can fly all over the field and do anything asked of an NFL LB, but his size (he’s expected to be 5-10/225) is a detraction. Give Gruden football players like this and the size doesn’t matter (much).             

28. Los Angeles Chargers: Andre Dillard, OT, Washington State. The Chargers depth up front is shallower than a Kardashian’s intellect. Dillard can play either tackle spot and appears undervalued at this point in the draft process. 
29. Kansas City Chiefs: DeAndre Baker, CB, Georgia. Building up the pass defense is an imperative for a team that figures to see a lot of comeback attempts against them. Baker brings a physical presence with a high football IQ; his speed in Indy is one of the biggest things I’m watching. 
30. Green Bay Packers (from NO): Chris Lindstrom, OG, Boston College. Lindstrom can play any interior line position. The Packers need his technically savvy surliness right away. 
31. Los Angeles Rams: Nasir Adderley, S, Delaware. The first FCS-level prospect comes off the board at the back end of the first round, and Adderly instantly upgrades the back end of the Rams defense with his all-around game.

32. New England Patriots: Irv Smith, TE, Alabama. It’s convenient to call Smith a Gronk replacement, but the lithe Smith has a different style of game. The Patriots will find ways to use his elusiveness in space and his blocking chops.

Teams that lack a first-round pick...

Dallas Cowboys: Deebo Samuel, WR, South Carolina

New Orleans Saints: Christian Wilkins, DT, Clemson

Chicago Bears: Riley Ridley, WR, Georgia

Jeff Risdon/RealGM

Tags: Arizona Cardinals, Atlanta Falcons, Baltimore Ravens, Buffalo Bills, Carolina Panthers, Chicago Bears, Cincinnati Bengals, Cleveland Browns, Dallas Cowboys, Denver Broncos, Detroit Lions, Green Bay Packers, Houston Texans, Indianapolis Colts, Jacksonville Jaguars, Kansas City Chiefs, Los Angeles Rams, Miami Dolphins, Minnesota Vikings, New England Patriots, New Orleans Saints, New York Giants, New York Jets, Oakland Raiders, Philadelphia Eagles, Pittsburgh Steelers, San Diego Chargers, San Francisco 49ers, Seattle Seahawks, Tampa Bay Buccaneers, Tennessee Titans, Washington Redskins, Draft, Draft Misc

Steelers Rule Out Trading Antonio Brown To Pats, AFC North Rival

Feb 24, 2019 9:40 AM

The Pittsburgh Steelers would prefer to trade Antonio Brown to a team in the NFC.

The Steelers also consider the New England Patriots and their three AFC North rivals as no-trade zones.

Teams have often looked to trade players outside their own conference.

Jeremy Fowler/ESPN

Tags: Baltimore Ravens, Cincinnati Bengals, Cleveland Browns, New England Patriots, Pittsburgh Steelers, Misc Rumor, Trade Rumor

Le'Veon Bell's Trainer Denies Report Of Massive Weight Gain

Feb 22, 2019 8:08 AM

Le'Veon Bell will hit free agency in March after the Pittsburgh Steelers confirmed that they will not use either the franchise tag or transition tag on the running back.

The New York Daily News reported that during his year off Bell put on 35 pounds, moving from 225 to 260 pounds.

However, trainer Pete Bommarito of Bommarito Performance Systems in Miami refutes those claims.

"It's so untrue it's laughable and ridiculous," Bommarito stated. "He has stuck to the plan and stayed in shape all year. It's ridiculous. Where does this stuff come from? Who says this? Nobody asked me."

Jason Cole, Matt Verderame/Fansided

Tags: Pittsburgh Steelers, Misc Rumor

49ers, Colts Given Highest Odds Of Acquiring Antonio Brown

Feb 21, 2019 6:56 PM

The San Francisco 49ers have been given the highest odds of acquiring Antonio Brown before the 2019 season, according to oddsmakers at BetDSI. Brown and the Pittsburgh Steelers have agreed to work to part ways this offseason

Antonio Brown team in Week 1 of 2019 regular season
San Francisco 49ers +250
Indianapolis Colts +300
Buffalo Bills +400
Arizona Cardinals +500
Pittsburgh Steelers +500
New York Jets +700
Houston Texans +800
Dallas Cowboys +1000
Denver Broncos +1000
Green Bay Packers +1200
Cleveland Browns +1500
Chicago Bears +1500
Tennessee Titans +1500
Oakland Raiders +2000
Philadelphia Eagles +2000
New Orleans Saints +2500
Seattle Seahawks +3500
Detroit Lions +4000
Miami Dolphins +5000
Cincinnati Bengals +7500
Washington Redskins +7500
Tampa Bay Buccaneers +10000
Jacksonville Jaguars +10000
Atlanta Falcons +10000
Minnesota Vikings +15000
Baltimore Ravens +15000
New England Patriots +20000
Carolina Panthers +20000
Los Angeles Chargers +20000
Kansas City Chiefs +25000
Los Angeles Rams +25000
New York Giants +30000
Will Antonio Brown trade be announced on the first day of 2019 NFL Draft? (Thursday, April 25)
Yes +130
No -150
How will Antonio Brown be traded? (must be traded before Week 1 of 2019 reg. season)
Draft picks only +120 
Draft picks and current players +180 
Current players only +250
Will Antonio Brown hold out during 2019 regular season? (must be on Steelers roster in Week 1)
Yes +150
No -200

RealGM Staff Report

Tags: Pittsburgh Steelers, San Francisco 49ers

Le'Veon Bell's Weight Might Have Hit 260 Pounds During Hiatus

Feb 21, 2019 10:04 AM

There are rumors that Le'Veon Bell allowed his weight to hit 260 pounds during his year-long hiatus, up from his typical playing weight of 225 pounds.

Bell sat out the entire 2018 season.

The New York Jets are concerned by Bell's weight as they pursue him in free agency.

Manish Mehta/New York Daily News

Tags: New York Jets, Pittsburgh Steelers

Steelers GM Gives Ben Roethlisberger Free Rein To Criticize Teammates

Feb 21, 2019 9:12 AM

Kevin Colbert publicly annointed soon-to-be 37-year-old Ben Roethlisberger the "unquestioned leader" of the Pittsburgh Steelers who has the freedom to publicly criticize teammates.

"He's the elder statesmen and the Super Bowl winner," Colbert told a group of local reporters Wednesday. "If our players were smart, they'd listen to him because he's been there. He's done it. He can tell them, 'No guys, what you're doing is or is not good enough to do this.'"

Roethlisberger criticized Antonio Brown after a Week 12 loss.

Privately, Brown took exception to that. And publicly, Brown tweeted Saturday that Roethlisberger had an "owner mentality" because of his willingness to call out players and coaches.

Jeremy Fowler/ESPN

Tags: Pittsburgh Steelers, Misc Rumor

Le'Veon Bell To Become Unrestricted Free Agent As Steelers Decline Tag

Feb 20, 2019 2:03 PM

The Pittsburgh Steelers have elected not to use a franchise or transition tag on Le'Veon Bell.

"Le'Veon is still a great player," Kevin Colbert said. "We can't afford to use any other type of tags. Le'Veon will be an unrestricted free agent at the start of the new league year."

The Steelers will receive a 2020 compensatory pick that could be worth as high as a third-round selection.

Bell declined to sign his franchise tender last year, leaving $14.5 million on the table and sitting out the entire season.

There was a battle brewing between the NFL and NFL Players Association over the value of a transition tag on Bell. Bell and the NFLPA would likely argue that the transition tag is close to $14.5 million based on the escalating value of tags, and the Steelers and the NFL would say it's closer to $9.5 million because Bell sat out.

Jeremy Fowler/ESPN

Tags: Pittsburgh Steelers, Free Agent Rumor, Misc Rumor

Antonio Brown, Steelers Agree Trade Will Occur In Offseason
Antonio Brown requested a trade in January.

Jeremy Fowler/ESPN

Antonio Brown Accuses Ben Roethlisberger Of Having 'Owner Mentality'
Antonio Brown and Ben Roethlisberger had issues toward the end of the 2018 season.

Jeremy Fowler/ESPN

Cardinals Listed As Favorites To Land Antonio Brown
The Steelers are expected to trade Antonio Brown this offseason and oddsmakers have noticed.

Michael David Smith/Pro Football Talk

Antonio Brown Requests Trade From Steelers
Antonio Brown believes he has been the scapegoat for issues with the Steelers.

Adam Schefter/ESPN

Steelers Could Transition Tag Le'Veon Bell With Intent To Trade
Le'Veon Bell would need to sign the tag in order to be traded.

Josh Alper/Pro Football Talk

Antonio Brown Allegedly Pushed Woman To Ground
The incident allegedly took place when the woman dropped off Antonio Brown's daughter at his residence.

Jeremy Fowler/ESPN

Antonio Brown Involved In Domestic Dispute
Antonio Brown was not arrested during the incident.


JuJu Smith-Schuster: Steelers Need To Stop Being 'Kardashians'
JuJu Smith-Schuster compared the Steelers to the Kardashians during an appearance on ESPN's First Take.

Jeremy Fowler/ESPN