Jon Gruden called Antonio Brown the hardest-working player he’s ever seen

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Antonio Brown‘s antics in Pittsburgh have undoubtedly scared away some teams that would otherwise be willing to trade for him. But there’s one other coach who we know thinks of Brown as the kind of guy he’d like to have on his practice field.

That coach is Jon Gruden, who said last year before his Raiders played the Steelers that he had previously visited Pittsburgh when preparing to call a Steelers game for ESPN and thought very highly of Brown.

“The greatest thing about this man is, I’ve told all our receivers: If you get a chance to watch him practice, you’ll see what unlocks the greatness in him. He’s the hardest working man, I think, in football,” Gruden said. “Hardest working player I’ve ever seen practice, and I’ve seen Jerry Rice, I’ve seen a lot of good ones. But I put Antonio Brown at the top. And if there’s any young wideouts out there, I’d go watch him practice and you’ll see for yourself why he’s such a good player.”

Gruden’s perception is a far cry from the image of Brown we’ve heard coming out of Pittsburgh this offseason. Gruden thinks Brown is exactly the kind of guy he’d want on his team — perhaps a guy he’ll trade for soon.

100 responses to “Jon Gruden called Antonio Brown the hardest-working player he’s ever seen

  1. Jon Gruden has called every player the hardest working player he has ever seen. Brown is the flavor of the moment for Gruden.
    Gruden has become the P.T. Barnum of the NFL. Meanwhile, what’s he done as head coach of the Raiders?

  2. Harder worker than Rice? How could he be with the time wasted on social media and whining?

  3. Aaron Rogers to Antonio Brown

    Mature star QB won’t take no AB Guff
    Two first round draft picks
    $50 million in cap space
    Dire need to rebuild Roger’s numbers with a quality receiver.

  4. Hard work and talent were never the issue. You can be a Gruden grinder all day but if you are a diva who won’t show up when the team needs you what good does hard work do?

  5. What do you mean “a far cry from the image of Brown we’ve heard coming out of Pittsburgh this offseason”?

    No one in Pittshurgh has ever said he wasn’t a hard worker and a great player.

    Mr. Big Chest’s “image” has been self-created through his own actions and words.

  6. Maybe this is the case; I don’t have inside info. I don’t know what’s going on in Da Burgh, but he’s either extremely disgruntled by events (including potentially those by his own cause) there or he’s becoming unglued. Either way, his public behavior seems to be different than it was say, 4 years ago. Any team that intends to sign him should do their due diligence.

  7. The “perception” coming out of Pittsburgh never had anything to do with his work ethic. Despite his antics, his work ethic has never been questioned.

  8. This guys is a megalomaniac. Yes. I am quite sure AB is harder working that the guy who is the undisputed #1 receiver of all time – one of the few times I am willing to suspend my belief that there is no such thing because he really was that great. How about Larry Fitz? No rings to show for it but clearly a seriously hard worker. Maybe he just never saw him practice.

  9. The main criterion for being a “Gruden Grinder” is a willingness to tell the (self-anointed) “coaching genius” how great he is. If Brown is willing to do that then Gruden will welcome him to the Raiders despite the fact that Brown is a disruptive player.

  10. That has never been a debate. Our work everyone. I heard one time the steelers would be closing the facility, he would be the last guy still working and they would send a guy to follow him home to stop him from going to yhe gym. Different stories out of Dallas with Dez.

    He hated meetings. But he never sloughed the work.

  11. As for the draft, we should be going defense all the way with the possibility of an O-lineman in the first two rounds. Prospects to look into: Nick Bosa DE, Quinnen Williams DT, Josh Allen DE, Devin White LB, Deandre Baker CB, Ed Oliver DT, Greedy Williams CB, Nasir Adderley S, Dalton Risner OL, Jeffery Simmons DT, Montez Sweat DE. Also wouldn’t mind grabbing a slot receiver, Andy Isabella and Parris Campbell Jr are very solid picks.

    JUST WIN BABY!!!

  12. Hardest working player he’s ever seen? In what universe? Seems to me the thing AB works hardest at is SELF-promotion. He might say he’s a team player, but he focuses on the ME in TEAM.

  13. If Gruden gave up a 3 for Martavis Bryant, the Steelers can expect 2 1’s and Al Davis’ ashes for Antonio.

  14. Why do people think Gruden is a good coach…did anyone watch the Raiders play last year….he can’t even play a decent running back only want to be’s and has beens

  15. Gruden is just trying to destroy the Raiders as revenge against Al Davis. When you look at his moves and comments through that lens, it all makes sense.

  16. Gruden has never won a SB without having the other teams play calls.

    Let that sink in.

    Or keep paying him 10 mil per.

  17. Gruden gushes about every player but let’s just say hypothetically that he does trade the Dallas #1 for AB and it works out from a football perspective. He’d have basically swapped Amari Cooper for Antonio Brown & I’d consider that a win.

  18. How would Gruden know this? Hmmm.

    Also, how is he a harder worker than Tom Brady or numerous other committed team players. Gronk is routinely working out at the facility until midnight in some cases.

    Brown is a quitter.

  19. Bunch of Gruden haters up in here.

    AB is a great talent and future HOF guaranteed.

    If Gruden plans to add him to the Roster it can be a great addition because AB is still an amazing talent. Gruden will need to make sure to keep him happy and motivated.

    Gruden built that 2002 Raider SB team and finished what Dungy never could do in TB when he won it all.

    Name another coach who built his SB team and beat it that next year?

    Those were both of Gruden’s creation and complete domination in the 2002 SB.

    Year 2 of Raiders rebuild. We shall see what he has planned.

  20. nyneal says:
    March 7, 2019 at 6:28 am
    Jon Gruden has called every player the hardest working player he has ever seen. Brown is the flavor of the moment for Gruden.
    Gruden has become the P.T. Barnum of the NFL. Meanwhile, what’s he done as head coach of the Raiders?
    ———————
    Gruden took a crappy team and made it a superbowl contender the last time he coached in Oakland. That is what he’s charged with again, and he’s making steps toawrds that. History – it’s a real thing.

  21. If the Raiders were to sign Brown, there wouldn’t be enough mirrors in their locker room for Brown and Gruden to use to stare at their favorite people.

  22. Nobody has ever had a better six year stretch number wise in nfl history than Brown.#nobody

  23. bonedup says:
    March 7, 2019 at 9:28 am
    Nobody has ever had a better six year stretch number wise in nfl history than Brown.#nobody

    ————-

    Smart teams aren’t going to pay him for what he’s already done.

  24. I believe AB is one if not the hardest worker in the NFL but He’s had the luxury of playing with Big Ben. His numbers will be on the decline after he leaves. Should of worked it out and stayed in the burg AB.

  25. I don’t know, AB smells like somebody Gruden would trade for, ya know so D. Carr can run the spider 2 Y-bannana

  26. Honestly, I love these fanboys who think their players are getting them an incredible bounty of picks.

  27. This comment confirms it — AB to Raiders. Gruden is laying the foundation for the trade. Only question remaining — which of the 3 first round picks do the Raiders give to Pittsburgh?

  28. “Nobody has ever had a better six year stretch number wise in nfl history than Brown.#nobody” ??As a great coach once said -stats are for losers, he should know. He just had to change the name of his boat , since he just won another Super Bowl.

  29. Chuckie, 10 yr 100 million $ deal. Chuckie’s plan screw up so bad they fire me after 2 years. Brilliant money maker that Chuckie is!!! He’ll bank 80 mil.

  30. Coaches blow smoke before games all the time with this “he’s the greatest” nonsense.

    I’ll believe it when I see it. The idea that a team collecting draft picks in a rebuilding effort would then flip a valuable asset for a 31 year-old receiver and then pay him mega-bucks is ridiculous.

  31. Everyone hate AB until hes on your team. The same went for Owens and Suh. Tom brady is hated for no reason other than winning ( im a saints fan btw) but maaann if he was available youd wish your team had him roght

  32. AB is the hardest whining player in the league…
    He has relegated himself to be only worth 1 or 2 year middle of the road contracts.
    Performance, attendance and attitude based bonuses only.
    He has proven that he can not be trusted to honor his word.
    That is about the worst thing a man can do to himself…

    Chuckie is stupid enough to pay him what he wants… I hope not.

    I saw a previous poster mention at GB may be the place for him.
    AR could do good things with AB, but not at the $$ AB thinks he is worth.

  33. exinsidetrader says:
    Gruden is just trying to destroy the Raiders as revenge against Al Davis. When you look at his moves and comments through that lens, it all makes sense.
    —————————-
    Maybe…
    Or Gruden is still grinding on the opinion that he couldn’t win with his own guys, and is out to prove he can or bust.

  34. Apparently one criticism from Big Ben about him not running the correct route made him so mad that his coach said that he gave up on the team the last few games.

  35. mkay, so a guy who watched him practice once for maybe 45 minutes knows more than the teammates that have been with him for years?

  36. “He hated meetings. But he never sloughed the work.”

    Hate to tell you but meetings are part of the work

  37. AB is the best wideout in the league. Proven with the numbers he puts up year in and out even while double teamed

  38. Pittsburgh Steelers the most consistent franchise over the last 45 years. If you can’t make it there, you can’t make it anywhere. The projection for Brown is downhill unless he goes to the Patriots and we know that isn’t happening!!

  39. What Todd Haley said was even better saying brown and Ben had the best chemistry hes ever seen lol

  40. mlhigh says: “A hard worker doesn’t show up late for practices and meetings.”
    =========================

    Unless he’s in the gym trying to push out one last set of reps or in the film room trying to watch one more game tape… Multiple former players have told stories of AB staying past closing time in the weight room.

    We all know a few guys that sometimes are so focused on a task that they lose all sense of time.

  41. I suggest the troll calling Brown a quitter needs to look at his stats before saying something so obviously stupid. He maybe a diva but hardly a quitter. He is also not someone sucker punching a prone DB from behind after the whistle.

  42. I don’t think there’s ever been a doubt he’s a hard worker. The guy was drafted in the sixth round and got better every year in the NFL. He worked his tail off, which makes it even more sad to see what he’s been doing lately.

  43. Nofoolnodrool says:
    March 7, 2019 at 10:48 am
    I suggest the troll calling Brown a quitter needs to look at his stats before saying something so obviously stupid. He maybe a diva but hardly a quitter. He is also not someone sucker punching a prone DB from behind after the whistle.
    *************

    I’m curious, what would you call someone who fails to show up the last week of practice and misses a must-win game to make the playoffs – all because someone else was named the team MVP for the season and it made you mad?

    He 100% quit on his team at a time that they needed him most. It’s awesome though that he has all of the regular seasons stats.

  44. Nofoolnodrool says:
    March 7, 2019 at 10:48 am

    I suggest the troll calling Brown a quitter needs to look at his stats before saying something so obviously stupid. He maybe a diva but hardly a quitter.
    ———————————————————————————–
    He literally quit and did not play in the must win final game of the year. That makes him a quitter. I’m not sure why this is difficult for you to comprehend.

  45. Hell yes as a steelers fan I hate to see him go. Great field player that only recently became negative but I believe it was because he wanted the ball more and more. Can’t blame him for that. Only knock was how he acted almost like a spoiled child when he didn’t get what hd wanted. Worked his butt off to get as good as he is. So he will shine at a place like Oakland where Gruden will demand respect and bs the go to guy. That is more than any first round pick could possibly guarantee!

  46. nyneal says:
    March 7, 2019 at 6:28 am
    Jon Gruden has called every player the hardest working player he has ever seen. Brown is the flavor of the moment for Gruden.
    Gruden has become the P.T. Barnum of the NFL. Meanwhile, what’s he done as head coach of the Raiders?

    =====================================

    the results are incomplete so far. you have to give the man time to build his program. more than just the 16 games so far anyways. geez. im not a raiders fan or anything, but bill belichick was 5-11 in his first year as our coach until he could start building his roster and seeing who will fit his mold and who wont. just saying.

  47. Gruden lies more than politicians and lawyers. Ever seen his pre-draft QB show or him on Monday Night Football? He gushes over every player and never once criticizes them in on air. He’s a fraud in the public eye.

  48. Translation: “Yes I’ll be trading for him and giving up a 1st rounder so I’m getting out in front of the critics when they ask me why I did this.”

    Good riddance Mr. Big Head!

  49. Gruden’s had 50 guys who were the hardest workers he’s ever seen. And his top 10 QB list has 35 guys on it. And there 250 college seniors out there who he thinks are locks for the first round of the draft.

  50. Nofoolnodrool says:
    March 7, 2019 at 10:48 am
    I suggest the troll calling Brown a quitter needs to look at his stats before saying something so obviously stupid. He maybe a diva but hardly a quitter. He is also not someone sucker punching a prone DB from behind after the whistle.

    ————

    But did he trip an oppsoment from the sideline? No, that was his boneheaded coach

  51. Him being an incredibly hard worker (which by all accounts he is), and him being a diva that quit on his team are not mutually exclusive.

  52. I don’t think this has ever been a secret. Anybody who’s seen AB’s Instagram, watched his workouts or listened to people talk about him know his work ethic is that of legends. It’s insane how much time he puts in and how many young players he works out with. Not just NFL guys. He works out with everyone from kids to college to pros.

  53. Brown is going to Oakland where he will play out his final years with a dumpster-fire organization that he deserves. The only question is; how much will Gruden further screw up the team with what he gives up in the trade?

  54. carloswlassiter says: “He literally quit and did not play in the must win final game of the year. That makes him a quitter. I’m not sure why this is difficult for you to comprehend.”
    ==========================

    Mike Tomlin confirmed on Jan 2 that he BENCHED Antonio Brown the last game for missing practice during the week. It’s not “quitting” if he showed up and the coach DNP’ed him for disciplinary reasons.

  55. even people who are really negative on AB have said his work ethic is second to none, seems to be common these day though that people have to have people they dislike seen only in a negative light. It is apparent he has ran his course with the steelers, that is likely equally the fault of his immaturity, Bens lack of leadership and the teams inability to reconcile such issues in house. He is still likely the the best oat the very least top 3) all around receiver in the league, you dont get that way but not working hard.

  56. at 12 million per season he is right there with Doug Baldwin, Emmanuel Sanders, Stefan Diggs, and Kennen Allen—-value if his head is on strait, but that is a concerning “if”

  57. Could be a sign that Gruden is willing to trade for AB but only if he’s getting the best AB who works hard and sets records and not the AB that behaves childishly, emotionally. He is not a young player anymore and should start acting like a guy who stands to lose millions if teams shy away from the risk of having a diva/cancer in the locker room.

    It could be that he’s made too many millions already and no longer is capable of playing a team sport where he may have to share the limelight with other players.

  58. akira1971 says:
    March 7, 2019 at 12:21 pm

    carloswlassiter says: “He literally quit and did not play in the must win final game of the year. That makes him a quitter. I’m not sure why this is difficult for you to comprehend.”
    ==========================

    Mike Tomlin confirmed on Jan 2 that he BENCHED Antonio Brown the last game for missing practice during the week. It’s not “quitting” if he showed up and the coach DNP’ed him for disciplinary reasons.
    ————————————————————————————-
    The apologists here are working overtime to defend this clown. So he quit on practice, but that’s not quitting. Got it.

  59. Mike Tomlin confirmed on Jan 2 that he BENCHED Antonio Brown the last game for missing practice during the week. It’s not “quitting” if he showed up and the coach DNP’ed him for disciplinary reasons.

    ——————————————————————————————

    Lol, he went AWOL for 4 days and then had his agent call the coach on Sunday morning saying he was going to play. GTFOH

  60. Gruden is overrated as a coach and a liar too. Gruden will deserve everything negative thing MBC will bring.

  61. So now the best WR in the game is probably going to the Raiders and all of the sudden he isnt good and jon gruden is crazy.

    just trying to sum up all the troll responses in one post for anybody scrolling through.

  62. Steeler’s reps really banging the Raiders angle and keeping the rumors out there. They want to steal another draft pick for a WR they will likely release anyway…

    Don’t take the bait.

  63. He has always been known as a hard worker to the people in Pittsburgh. You guys sound like Rachel Maddow describing Donald Trump it’s sort of pathetic.

  64. raiderbeer34 says:March 7, 2019 at 2:04 pm
    So now the best WR in the game is probably going to the Raiders and all of the sudden he isnt good and jon gruden is crazy.
    =============================

    Literally no one here said he wasn’t good or that he wasn’t a hard worker. Posters are rightfully pointing out that he’s a quitter, diva, and a cancer.

  65. As a 35+ year Raider fan, Jon Gruden scares the hell out of me. He is missing a football chromosome man.

  66. Haters are hilarious. The week before Pitt played the Raiders they played LAC, week 13. Brown had 10 receptions for 154 yards and scored 1 TD.

  67. A year ago, unruly and obnoxious Steelers’ fans claimed Brown was the greatest player of all time. Now that they can’t have him anymore (because, like most of us, he is sick and tired of Little Overrated Ben destroying the team), he’s suddenly sour grapes. These fans are so predictable. Bunch of hypocrites.

  68. Rice helped us to a Super Bowl
    Ross quit on routes
    Just what AB will do is anyone’s guess. But if Carr wants him, and he does, in a division that doesn’t have great secondary play, and gruden can make this happen, we might see lightning in a bottle to get that score we needed late in games last two years.

    I get it about Carr, but damn, give him a chance to prove himself with some time in the pocket and throw to somenone who isn’t JUST a great route runner.

    Carr grew tired of hitting coopers stone hands.

  69. Can’t wait to watch Gruden trade for AB, then draft a QB. Should be a fun season when Mr Big Head throws his tantrums on the sideline when Carr overthrows him while Carr’s heir-in-waiting watches from behind his clipboard.

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