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Antonio Brown was benched Sunday, but will start this week

Pittsburgh Steelers v New England Patriots Getty Images

There have been no shortage of things that have gone wrong for the Steelers this season, but wide receiver Antonio Brown had been able to stay pretty much above the fray as he racked up catches as the top receiver on the offense.

Even Brown hasn’t been able to remain totally immune from the misery that’s settled in around the team, however. Coach Mike Tomlin said, via Ed Bouchette of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, Tuesday that he benched Brown late in the loss to the Patriots last Sunday because they didn’t feel that Brown was providing “quality execution” of his assignments.

Whatever frustration there was with Brown on Sunday, however, it won’t wind up affecting his status for the Week 10 game against the Bills. Tomlin said that Brown will start and play his regular role.

Tomlin has said that players who are lacking effort will be benched and there’s no better way to illustrate that point than by benching a player as important to the Steelers’ chances of winning a few games this season as Brown, but the flip side of that is that Tomlin will have to extend the same treatment to every player on the team. That will make it difficult to field a defense since it was hard to find a single player who was providing quality execution of his assignments in the second half of the New England loss.

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54 Responses to “Antonio Brown was benched Sunday, but will start this week”
  1. doctorrustbelt says: Nov 5, 2013 12:39 PM

    The Bubby Brister Era has returned.

    The steelers haven’t played well since steelers team doctor (dr. rydze) was investigated and indicted by federal authorities for illegal distribution of hgh and steroids.

  2. tacowrecker says: Nov 5, 2013 12:49 PM

    Gotta wonder if a tough year like this will make Dick LeBeau finally decide to hang it up. I hope not, as I think he’s a legend. The Steelers problems are due to lack of quality players/ lack of talent, not coaching issues. Still, though, he’s 76 and a miserable year like this could definitely make retirement seem attractive.

  3. logicaldawg says: Nov 5, 2013 12:51 PM

    I guess the bench was getting a little crowded.

  4. logicaldawg says: Nov 5, 2013 12:52 PM

    With the cold weather approaching, maybe they should wheel the ping pong table outside to keep the bench jockeys moving?

  5. doctorrustbelt says: Nov 5, 2013 12:57 PM

    The 2013 Minnesota Vikings have 1 win.

    Who did Minnesota DESTROY???

    ANSWER: The pittsburgh steelers

  6. dexterismyhero says: Nov 5, 2013 12:58 PM

    Tomlin has said that players who are lacking effort will be benched .

    Maybe the GM should bench Omar!

  7. diehardfootballfan says: Nov 5, 2013 1:00 PM

    Tomlin and Haley should have both been benched. The coaching decisions are so bizarre, how in the heck do you bench one of your best players???? Dumb. Dumb coach, arrogant offensive coach…. My team is bad this year, but the coaching decisions are downright stupid. How many years do you need to build an offensive line Tomlin???

  8. alchemistcirca1979 says: Nov 5, 2013 1:04 PM

    I love the Pittsburgh Steelers!!!! They are my favorite sports team!!!

    Everyone enjoy kicking them while they are done because it wont last.

  9. z06vision says: Nov 5, 2013 1:10 PM

    We have bigger problems than A Brown; Ben 19 mil, Woodley 13.5 mil , Timmons 11.8 mil, Troy 10.8 mil, Ike, 10.4 mil, Heath 8.4 mil, Maurkice Pouncey 4.6 mil, jarvis Jones 1.9 mil cap charges for the current season….Do you think anyone of these players are worth this much for this season?????? Who authorized these contracts?

  10. crownofthehelmet says: Nov 5, 2013 1:12 PM

    After watching last night what creative things Tressman did with a bad o-line and an average back for an effective running game, Haley should be fired immediately. Bell is as talented of back this city has seen in a long, long time, and our bs play calling is wasting it.

  11. thegenoatkinsdiet says: Nov 5, 2013 1:16 PM

    Everything in life has a cycle. This is going to get worse before it gets better.

  12. folkcrusader says: Nov 5, 2013 1:17 PM

    The team’s gonna win 4 games tops. Next years salary is not guaranteed. If I was him I’d be careful as well.

  13. jeffa43 says: Nov 5, 2013 1:18 PM

    Bench Haley….

    For good!

  14. jm91rs says: Nov 5, 2013 1:29 PM

    crownofthehelmet says: Nov 5, 2013 1:12 PM

    After watching last night what creative things Tressman did with a bad o-line and an average back for an effective running game, Haley should be fired immediately.

    _____________________________________

    I’ll agree Tressman has done good things in Chicago but I wouldn’t call Matt Forte an average back. He’s far better than average. His running stats may not show it, but is all purpose yards do.

  15. brownsfandvm says: Nov 5, 2013 1:34 PM

    lol @ the Steelers.
    I feels good.

  16. 6ball says: Nov 5, 2013 1:35 PM

    .

    Lack of talent + lack of cap space = major problems.

    .

  17. tavisteelersfan says: Nov 5, 2013 1:36 PM

    Tough year. I bought 4 tickets to Lion’s game back in June … wonder if I overpaid … LOL.

    Anyway, can’t wait to get to Pittsburgh for a four day weekend and have a ball. It would be good if they turned things around a bit by then.

    P.S. Last year was the first year we ever went down, and darn if it wasn’t the San Diego game … great time on the weekend, dud of a game.

  18. halftermguv says: Nov 5, 2013 1:45 PM

    Seriously Tomlin, it took a franchise record for points allowed to start laying down the law?

    Lost in the NE debacle were great performances of Roethlisberger and Cotchery.

    Two things I know: I’ll aways support the team under the ownership of the Rooney’s and DOCTORRUSTBELT’s team has never won a superbowl.

    Ohio’s professional sports teams’ motto “Hey one winner (Reds) out of six isn’t bad!”

  19. koenig61 says: Nov 5, 2013 1:52 PM

    It’s amazing how many posters on here truly know so little about football. I get the trolls, (yes your docotrrustbelt) I get that you post the exact same thing on each Steeler story and somehow it makes your day, and you in your own little mind truly believe what you post. But what I don’t get are the comments about Tomlin can’t coach, and he needs to be fired. The actual posters who believe the only reason he won a SB and went to another was because some of the players were from when Cowher was last coached. Yet somehow cowher couldn’t get that last team to a playoff game. Every time there is a coaching change there are players left over from the previous regime, yet somehow not all new coaches are able to get those players to perform to a SB level. Why is that? could it be because not all coaches can get the max out of the talent? I keep reading about the poor packers and all of their injuries. The Steelers have had just as many starters go down, and even have a center playing who was picked up off the streets and wasn’t even playing football. Their starting TE missed the first 5 games, their starting RB missed the first 4 games, their back up TE hasn’t played, their offensive line has been decimated by injuries, and guys are playing out of position. Yet everyone blames Tomlin? The problem with some Steeler fans is they just don’t understand how hard it is to continually keep a team above 500 and competing for playoff spots year after year. There are teams out there who rarely have winning seasons let alone get to the playoffs on a regular basis or 3 SB’s in the past 8 years. I think some Steeler fans are very upset right now, and rightfully so, but don’t let the trolls have you believing that what the Steelers have done for the past 45 years isn’t working. And doctorrustbel, get a new catch phrase, you sound as pathetic as the trolls on the patriot stories saying the patriots haven’t won a SB since spygate. As if the Patriots 2 SB appearances and all of the wins and playoff appearances mean they are mediocre. doctorrustbelt you keep talking about the steelers and steroids, are you ignoring all of these stories about players being suspended for PED’s? I dont recall any of those players being steelers.

  20. bencoates57 says: Nov 5, 2013 1:56 PM

    “Everyone enjoy kicking them while they are done because it wont last.”

    ———–

    Can anyone identify the Freudian slip in the previous comment?

  21. bencoates57 says: Nov 5, 2013 1:57 PM

    In order to free up some cap space, you need to release your best players.

  22. pittsburgh361 says: Nov 5, 2013 2:10 PM

    Ok yes the cap hits are high. But what bens going to get a 3 yr extention which will drop that to less than 13mill. Your most key plays heath pouncy timmons woodley they will restructure like they always do. It dont matter if they are worth it for this season they are all paid for there body of work. Without ben u wouldnt have a single win. Who would you replace in there spot. How long do you think the bemgals have witb dalton and aj green coming up on contracts. They spent there cap on signing adkins and the defense. They have about 2 years left. The browns 2 years left thats if they have a qb. Ravens and steelers have been on top for the last 22 years and we both are having a crappy season at the same time. So in the next year or 2 who do you think are going back to the top so yeah ill take a couple of downs years to have basicaly 20 years of success. Its funny how browns fans can start yapping the gums when we have play about as bad as football as you can play and yet they have won 2 more games than us. And the bungles havent won a damn thing since 89. So before the fans of the browns and bungles start running there mouth just realize your team are going to be in the same situation in 2 years but unlike pittsburgh and baltimore it dont take us 20 years to recover..

  23. crownofthehelmet says: Nov 5, 2013 2:22 PM

    jm91rs, I thought about not typing “average”, but thought about it some more. I think Forte has some skills, but what makes him average is that he can’t run downhill. Dude will not lower his head and run over anyone. He’s the softest impact player I’ve seen in a while.

  24. harrycanyon says: Nov 5, 2013 2:23 PM

    Steelers haven’t been the same one single person was hired. Todd Haley. He is the problem on offense. He lucked out with Warner. He struck out bigtime as a headcoach. And has made the Steelers into a joke on offense. Fire this man, and hire a real OC. The improvements will be immediate,

  25. johnnybgood19 says: Nov 5, 2013 2:24 PM

    Who has a problem with this sequence:

    a) He benches Brown in second half cause he is under preforming.
    b) The Pats put on a scoring display in second half mainly because the Steelers gave them short fields for the rest of the game.
    c) Tomlin vows that he will not start or not play anyone who was not up to standards
    d) Brown who was benched against the Pats for under preforming will start against the Bills

    I,m just a country boy… so I guess I confuse easily….

  26. cursedvikings1998 says: Nov 5, 2013 2:31 PM

    If Tomlin has gone so far as to bench Brown – who has the most receptions in the league thus far in 2013 – than it sounds like Tomlin is the problem.

    The man has lost his marbles.

  27. steelcityjoker says: Nov 5, 2013 2:34 PM

    At this point Tomlin should bench the defense. When your QB puts up over three hundred yards and is able to put 31 points up…..its not the offense or the O-line. This defense just cant stop any one. They are predictable, slow, and always out of position.

  28. citizenstrange says: Nov 5, 2013 2:35 PM

    koenig61 says:Nov 5, 2013 1:52 PM

    It’s amazing how many posters on here truly know so little about football. I get the trolls, (yes your docotrrustbelt) I get that you post the exact same thing on each Steeler story and somehow it makes your day, and you in your own little mind truly believe what you post. But what I don’t get are the comments about Tomlin can’t coach, and he needs to be fired.
    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
    You are aware the Steelers are 2-6 right?

  29. kpf1981 says: Nov 5, 2013 2:35 PM

    koenig61, i don’t quite understand what you are saying. this is what i see. first and foremost i think Cowher was an average coach on Sundays. he lost a lot of games he should have won. 1-4 in AFCCG is my strongest evidence. because those are the only ones i really care about and remember. Cowher was excellent at coaching players and developing talent. we had a lot of super stars during the Cowher era, but many good football players, too. I honestly think it is because of the coaching and development from Cowher. Tomlin makes bone headed coaching decisions all the time. i’m sick of his rhetoric (so is the media and i’m pretty sure his players are too). i haven’t seen him develop one player into a fundamentally sound player, even high draft picks. he did in fact go to those super bowls with mostly Cowher’s exceptional players, DL defense and BA offense. what exactly did he do but say “i come to work and pass 5 lombardis, not 5 rushing titles”. what about unleashing hell? what about changes being made and then none are really made? this coach is horrible. players aren’t motivated, players aren’t ready, stupid decisions, always the same garbage in press conferences, and he took away ping pong, PING PONG! that’s the type of motivation i like to see, taking away PING PONG! tomlin is a joke. i don’t like him as the head coach because he is a horrible head coach. defense is getting worse, O-line is getting worse, ben is getting older. our highest paid players aren’t that great of players anymore. TP is playing pretty good but doesn’t justify his salary. he’s a safety! woodley is washed up, timmons is good, but why are you paying a LB 10-11 mil a season? ike is old and getting worse and is being injured more often. pouncey is over-rated and should be gone. it’s always this player did some good things and we have to work on this with tomlin…but nobody ever gets better. hood hasn’t gotten better. heyward hasn’t blossomed, gilbert and adams are awful most of the time. you’re telling me the guy who hit on all of the players when Cowher was here is now missing all of a sudden. the HC sets the tone of the organization and tomlin doesn’t know what the heck he is doing and it shows with the players on field play. say what you will, but it’s true. our best players are old and overpaid for their positions and production. this team is going to be worse next year and the year after that

  30. cursedvikings1998 says: Nov 5, 2013 2:36 PM

    Btw I’m enjoying the implosion of God’s former team, The Pissburgh Stealers.

    Cuz Pig Pen is a bad person.

  31. 6ball says: Nov 5, 2013 2:51 PM

    .

    Let’s not forget that the Steelers are already down a 3rd rounder to the Browns in the Shamarko Thomas trade.

    The usually comical Browns have 2 picks in each of Rounds 1, 3, and 4. They’re a team that could get good in a hurry.

    .

  32. crownofthehelmet says: Nov 5, 2013 3:11 PM

    6ball says:
    The usually comical Browns have 2 picks in each of Rounds 1, 3, and 4. They’re a team that could get good in a hurry.
    ———————————————
    I wouldn’t call 20+ years “a hurry”.

  33. cliverush says: Nov 5, 2013 3:23 PM

    Jericho torched the Pats. This player is an example of the rat Tannenbaums (NYJ)incompetence in football knowledge. He released numerous good veteran players for years.

  34. patriotinvasion says: Nov 5, 2013 3:43 PM

    Big Ben’s deficiencies are showing up big time now that he no longer has a beastly defense. They were able to mask most of his flaws because they always kept games close and provided Ben with good field position and turnovers.

    When Brady’s defense started to stink after they lost their championship caliber vets (Bruschi, Harrison, Vrabel, McGinest, Law, etc), he only went on to lead the 2 highest scoring offenses of all time and came withing 2 Eli drives from 2 more rings.

  35. bobzilla1001 says: Nov 5, 2013 3:52 PM

    The Steelers aren’t just a 2-6 team.
    They are also a team that’s lost 11 of its past 15 games. It’s a team that also was winless in the preseason.
    The Steelers are a team that couldn’t decide if Jarvis Jones or Jason Worilds should be the starter, or if Jonathan Dwyer is or isn’t an NFL running back, or if Mike Adams is or isn’t a starting tackle, or if special-teams demon Stevens Sylvester does or doesn’t belong on their roster, or if having depth for an injury-prone O-line is or isn’t important.
    The Steelers couldn’t even decide on whether they did or didn’t have an adequate punter.
    Mike Tomlin has to be held accountable.

  36. Nofoolnodrool says: Nov 5, 2013 4:41 PM

    bobzilla1001 says:
    Nov 5, 2013 3:52 PM
    The Steelers aren’t just a 2-6 team.
    They are also a team that’s lost 11 of its past 15 games. It’s a team that also was winless in the preseason.
    The Steelers are a team that couldn’t decide if Jarvis Jones or Jason Worilds should be the starter, or if Jonathan Dwyer is or isn’t an NFL running back, or if Mike Adams is or isn’t a starting tackle, or if special-teams demon Stevens Sylvester does or doesn’t belong on their roster, or if having depth for an injury-prone O-line is or isn’t important.
    The Steelers couldn’t even decide on whether they did or didn’t have an adequate punter.
    Mike Tomlin has to be held accountable.

    0 0
    Report comment. Unlike you I am just a “casual fan” and not a self proclaimed expert on all things steeler. However even someone as casual as I am knows the steelers are very patient with their coaches….right steeler guru? So no matter how many posts you make they will give Tomlin time to right the ship…..even a guru should see that.

  37. Deb says: Nov 5, 2013 5:22 PM

    I’ve long been a Tomlin supporter, but don’t fully understand the logic of benching Antonio Brown during the Patriots game. He’s got some annoying quirks, but generally works hard and is the best receiver on the team. Was anyone else catching balls during the period he sat on the bench? Seems the Pats were doing the scoring late in the game.

    Jack Lambert once said that players at this level shouldn’t have to be motivated. To a certain extent, that’s true. But these players seem to increasingly unmotivated. And that’s not typical of a Steelers team. In addition to having talent problems, Pittsburgh clearly lacks leadership in the locker room and on the coaching staff. This tactic of sitting players might work on a college team where you have a greater depth chart. But it’s not working here. I don’t know the answer, but seeing this internal stuff played out in the press is becoming embarrassing.

  38. billiamsofdollars says: Nov 5, 2013 5:46 PM

    pittsburgh361 says:Nov 5, 2013 2:10 PM

    Ok yes the cap hits are high. But what bens going to get a 3 yr extention which will drop that to less than 13mill. Your most key plays heath pouncy timmons woodley they will restructure like they always do.

    *********************************************

    You do realize that so many restructurings are one of the reasons the team is in trouble now, right?

  39. bobzilla1001 says: Nov 5, 2013 6:15 PM

    As has been stated on this site several times by citizenstrange, Tomlin’s contract runs through the 2017 season, and the Rooneys aren’t about to eat the money he’s owed.
    But that doesn’t mean that Tomlin doesn’t deserve to be criticize or scrutinized. But you can do what you want to do, bigfool. What you do really doesn’t matter to me or to anyone else.

  40. citizenstrange says: Nov 5, 2013 9:01 PM

    Tomlin’s contract runs through 2016. There will be a new coach in 2017.

    Six years without a playoff win — starting with getting Tebowed two years ago — will be enough to get Tomlin fired despite his “blew away the Rooneys” interview.

  41. enoughofthatalready says: Nov 5, 2013 9:06 PM

    The cap situation will be resolved, partially. Brett Kiesel and Ryan Clark will not be re-signed. Ike Taylor has already restructured his contract. BR will restructure. Woodley will restructure. Heath Miller and Troy Polamalu present some issues, however. You cannot re-sign both of these guys. Either Emmanuel Sanders or Jerricho Cothery will walk. Don’t forget that the Steelers will have at least 6 draft picks in the first 4 rounds next year because of the free agent losses of Mendenhall, Wallace, and Keenan Lewis.

  42. tobiasjodter says: Nov 5, 2013 9:06 PM

    doctorrustbelt says: Nov 5, 2013 12:39 PM

    The steelers haven’t played well since steelers team doctor (dr. rydze) was investigated and indicted by federal authorities for illegal distribution of hgh and steroids.
    —————————–

    False.

    Rydze came under investigation 2006. The raid on his pharmacy was in February 2007. No longer affiliated with Steelers in June 2007.

    Steelers won SB XLIII in February of 2009. They lost SB XLV in February of 2011.

  43. enoughofthatalready says: Nov 5, 2013 9:10 PM

    patriotinvasion……you cannot ignore Ben’s overall completion percentage and QB rating out of the pocket. The Steelers defense does not help those stats. Plus his winning percentage is in the top 4 all-time even with them losing 11 out of the last 15. Sure the defense helped him win 99 games, but he did not play bad enough to lose those 99 wins. That is important.

  44. enoughofthatalready says: Nov 5, 2013 9:14 PM

    brownsfandvm says: Nov 5, 2013 1:34 PM

    lol @ the Steelers.
    I feels good.

    What..isn’t this the first time since the Ravens were the Browns that the Browns have a better record than the Steelers and even that did not happen much in the early 1990s? It is about time chief. I wouldn’t lol too much. Any Browns player that shows any promise will be traded away or let go in free agency anyway.

  45. crownofthehelmet says: Nov 5, 2013 9:32 PM

    patriotinvasion says:
    Nov 5, 2013 3:43 PM
    When Brady’s defense started to stink after they lost their championship caliber vets (Bruschi, Harrison, Vrabel, McGinest, Law, etc), he only went on to lead the 2 highest scoring offenses of all time and came withing 2 Eli drives from 2 more rings.
    ———————————————
    So what you’re saying is that with a good D Brady won his rings, and since then his D has stunk and he only went on to lead his team to zero championships. I think I understand, but I thought your post was to point out how Brady is different then Ben, not to point out the striking similarity.

  46. 1mommicked1 says: Nov 5, 2013 10:03 PM

    the coach is the problem in these ways–he has not prepared the player to be ready to play good, he fails during the game to get his player to perform up to standard, the coach then caves and takes out his one slim hope to stay in the game. here’s an idea–trade him in the off season and re-tool.

  47. williamshatnerstoupee says: Nov 6, 2013 8:54 AM

    citizenstrange…….you seem to have some pretty good inside information (Tomlin’s last year being 2016). Would you care to enlighten everyone with some other tidbits? I’m wondering what position you hold within the Steeler organization…..you must be pretty high up to know such things so far ahead of time.

  48. pabrownsfan says: Nov 6, 2013 9:46 AM

    There are a lot of holes but at least you didn’t start the tear with Weedon like we did. Good luck Sunday that’s a very winnable game.

  49. pabrownsfan says: Nov 6, 2013 9:47 AM

    I meant year but he did give me tears.

  50. rolli1967 says: Nov 6, 2013 11:25 AM

    Deb says:
    Nov 5, 2013 5:22 PM
    I’ve long been a Tomlin supporter, but don’t fully understand the logic of benching Antonio Brown during the Patriots game. He’s got some annoying quirks, but generally works hard and is the best receiver on the team. Was anyone else catching balls during the period he sat on the bench? Seems the Pats were doing the scoring late in the game.

    Jack Lambert once said that players at this level shouldn’t have to be motivated. To a certain extent, that’s true. But these players seem to increasingly unmotivated. And that’s not typical of a Steelers team. In addition to having talent problems, Pittsburgh clearly lacks leadership in the locker room and on the coaching staff. This tactic of sitting players might work on a college team where you have a greater depth chart. But it’s not working here. I don’t know the answer, but seeing this internal stuff played out in the press is becoming embarrassing.

    ———————————————-

    Deb, I was thinking the exact same thing. Why in the world would you bench one of your best receiver and playmaker with your team struggling to win?!?! It totally defies logic. Instead of benching your players, why not ENCOURAGE players by saying something like, “you may be having a rough game, but I believe in you and I know you can go win us this game, go win it for us!!!” The threatening to bench everyone may work at the high school and college levels but not in NFL. These are grown men who are professionals and would not be where they are now without paying their dues in high school and college. It looks like Tomlin may may have lost this team through his own blunders.

    Imagine the outcry in C-town if Chud benched Josh Gordon for a couple of miscues and then ended up getting trounced in the end. Browns fans would rightly question that decision.

  51. bobzilla1001 says: Nov 6, 2013 12:59 PM

    I didn’t realize that only front-office personnel were allowed to know when a coach or player’s contract expires?
    That’s a knew one.
    You casuals are hilarious!!!!

  52. Deb says: Nov 6, 2013 2:29 PM

    @rolli1967 …

    Yes, Tomlin’s decisionmaking really concerns me. These are desperation moves you simply don’t see from the best coaches in the game. Sure, Belichick will bench Welker a quarter for violating team rules–a move I supported. But the team was in a good place, he had other people to fill that role, and he was reinforcing “The Patriot Way”–which is what ultimately keeps the team competitive. You don’t just keep sitting people willy-nilly each week because you’re losing–especially not your best people when you have no one to replace them. The only message he’s sending is that he’s lost control of the team.

  53. Deb says: Nov 6, 2013 2:34 PM

    @bob …

    Guys have made similar snarky comments to me about how I must be in the locker room to know whether Ben is studying film. Huh? As you said, if you follow the team and the sport, you know the contract terms and stats for players and coaches you take an interest in. You know which players have a reputation for working hard in the conditioning room or slacking and showing up late to team meetings. And you know which QBs spend a lot of extra time working with their receivers and studying film. We’re not pulling this stuff out of thin air.

  54. phathead7 says: Nov 7, 2013 1:36 PM

    Antonio Brown was benched because he ran the wrong route again and because he ran the wrong route Ben through a int.Brown was supposed to run a fly pattern down the side line instead he ran a post pattern and Ben through the ball for a fly pattern and it was picked off.if people would actually watch the games instead of sportscenter highlights you would know this

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