The Steelers have officially ruled Antonio Brown out for Sunday’s game in Denver, which means Pacman Jones owes him an apology.
Brown suffered a concussion in Pittsburgh’s win over Cincinnati last week on a crossing hit from Vontaze Burfict. Penalties to Burfict and to Jones for a subsequent altercation handed the Steelers the game, and Burfict was later suspended three games for repeated safety violations.
In interviews in the days after the game, Jones repeatedly accused Brown of faking his injury to draw a penalty.
“Man, Antonio Brown was not hurt,” Jones said. “I know he was faking it. Go back and look at the play. You go back and look at the play and you tell me if Vontaze hit him in the head, or did his shoulder pad barely touch him?”
Jones doubled down the next day, saying that Brown deserved “a Grammy” for his acting and said he’d be willing to apologize—if Brown didn’t play. But “he will be cleared Friday, I promise you.”
Well, about that. Either the Steelers’ priorities are so fucked that they’re willing to sit the NFL’s best receiver while healthy just to force Pacman Jones to say “sorry,” or Brown’s concussion symptoms are so severe that he’s been unable to take part in even non-contact drills and the team knows there’s no way that’ll change in the next two days.
The Steelers are fucked. Brown’s out. Martavis Bryant is good, but Ben Roethlisberger may not be able to throw a ball more than eight yards. DeAngelo Williams appears unlikely to play. (Incredibly, Vontaze Burfict is responsible for the injuries to Brown, Roethlisberger, and Le’Veon Bell. Burfict singlehandedly ruined the Steelers’ season.) Denver’s defense is great enough without spotting it a crippled offense to go against.