In his first public comments since he sustained a concussion in the Steelers’ 18-16 victory against Cincinnati in an AFC wild card game, Steelers All-Pro receiver Antonio Brown had some strong words for Vontaze Burfict and Adam Jones of the Cincinnati Bengals when he joined the Cook and Poni Show on 93.7 The Fan this morning.
It was Burfict who hit Brown in the head with his shoulder pads well after an incomplete pass late in the fourth quarter. The resulting penalty helped the Steelers get in position to kick the winning field goal, but the hit prevented Brown from playing in the AFC division round game against the Broncos the next week. Burfict was suspended for the first three games of next season for repeated violations of the NFL’s rules against dangerous hits on opposing players.
“I feel like guys don’t want to stop me no more,” Brown said. “They want to take me out. They want to kill. They want to steal my dreams. They want to ruin me. They want to end me. We’re not going to let them. We’re going to win more.”
When asked if Burfict was saying those types of things on the field, Brown replied: “Every guy talks, man. When you do something like that, you hit a guy after the play, a defenseless guy in the helmet. There are a lot of things that aren’t right about that.”
Brown also had a terse reply when asked if he had any interaction with Jones, the Bengals cornerback who claimed Brown was faking the injury. Jones said he would apologize to Brown if Brown could not play against the Broncos, which he did on social media, but Brown wasn’t pleased that Jones made his claim.
“The guy texted me,” Brown said. “No reply. I don’t even know why people give him the platform. Ridiculous.”
Brown said he was never close to being cleared to play against the Broncos.
“I didn’t have a chance,” he said. “Man, I wish I could have been out there with my teammates. I’m living with regrets that we could have been in the Super Bowl.”
Brown said his symptoms that week never subsided.
“Seventy percent of your vision holds your balance,” he said. “I had no energy, bad balance, dizziness, headaches. I wouldn’t have been able to play.”
Brown said he started to feel better the following Friday and was then cleared by doctors five days later, but it was unclear if he would have been able to play in the AFC championship game had the Steelers advanced.
Brown also had an interesting reply when asked if he would be rooting for his former teammate Emmanuel Sanders in Super Bowl 50.
“No way,” he said. “I mean I want him to do well, but I don’t want to see him get a Super Bowl ring because that’s something I have to live with during the offseason, him throwing rings in my face. That’s not something I’m trying to hear.”
Sanders and Brown were part of the same draft class in 2010 and played in Super Bowl XLV as rookies. Sanders was a third-round pick and Brown a sixth-round pick.