Two months ago I wrote, “Where there is smoke, there is typically fire. And as it stands right now, Antonio Brown and the Pittsburgh Steelers appear headed for a split.”
The breakup is official as the Raiders and Steelers have verbally agreed to a trade, per ESPN’s Adam Schefter. Oakland will part with a third and fifth round pick in the 2019 NFL Draft while also reworking Brown’s contract.
Brown is now slated to make $50.125 million over three years with $30.125 million guaranteed, and with incentives, the contract could go up to $54.125 million.
The Steelers were expected to deal Brown by Friday as it appeared the Bills were primed to land the star wide out but trade talks fell through. Brown was also quick to refute the news via social media labeling it as “fake news.” Fast-forward one day and Brown is now set to don the Silver and Black.
Brown, who has been no stranger to fueling situations like this on social media, was quick to express is feelings about playing with quarterback Derek Carr.
When there was speculation as if the Raiders were going to part with either a late first round pick or even a second round pick, much of Raider Nation was nervous for such a deal to acquire a talented, albeit aging receiver. That’s not to discredit the amazing talent Brown still offers, but that’s a hefty price for a soon to be 31-year old wide receiver.
However, that is not how things played out as head coach Jon Gruden and general manager Mike Mayock have successfully kept four picks within the top 35, while simultaneously adding arguably the most talented wide receiver in football.
All in all, both teams get what they want. The Steelers separate themselves from a disgruntled player and the Raiders welcome an All-Pro without giving up early draft picks.