If the Denver Broncos decide to pursue Antonio Brown, it could be on the recommendation of a couple of coaches he has ties to.
I wonder if Antonio Brown wants out of Pittsburgh?
Brown hasn’t been released, nor has he been traded, but he posted that video on his Twitter page saying goodbye to the Steelers fan base and the tweet is catching fire.
According to ESPN’s Adam Schefter, Brown has officially notified the Steelers’ front office of his desire to be traded.
It has already been reported that the Broncos are expected to be among the teams interested in Brown when he goes on the trade block. That idea — the idea of trading for Brown — doesn’t sit well with all of Broncos Country and perhaps rightly so.
Brown has caused or at least fueled quite a bit of drama in Pittsburgh over the past couple of months, but prior to that, he just seemed like a fun, charismatic NFL receiver. Nothing out of the ordinary or red-flag-worthy personality-wise.
Then, Ben Roethlisberger called Brown out for his route running and those comments seemed to irk Brown. It was almost as if what had become public was brewing for a long time behind the scenes, and things finally boiled over.
Brown certainly doesn’t need defending when it comes to his personality and the team looking to acquire him will know what they are getting into. For the Denver Broncos, specifically, it would be a very educated and calculated move.
Why? Because the Broncos employ two coaches who know Brown just about as well as you could know a guy.
First and foremost, Mike Munchak spent the past five years working with the Steelers as an offensive line coach. He didn’t work directly with Brown, of course, but he certainly knows him well and would be able to give the Broncos a very clear picture of the type of player –and more importantly, person — they would be acquiring.
Second, the Broncos have a wide receivers coach in Zach Azzanni who knows Brown from way back when.
12 years ago, when Brown was a young freshman at Central Michigan University, his receivers coach was a young Zach Azzanni, and the two spent the exact same time period — 2007-09 — with the Chippewas.
Brown left Central Michigan after his junior season in 2009 and was picked in the sixth round of the 2010 NFL Draft by the Steelers.
Azzanni moved on after the 2009 season and went to work for the Florida Gators’ program.
Both Munchak and Azzanni could really speak to the type of person Brown is and give the Broncos perhaps the most educated report of any team out there as far as his most recent situation and what kind of guy he truly is, and what kind of fit he would be in Denver’s locker room.
Though the idea of simply inserting a ‘diva’ personality in the Broncos’ locker room is not appealing, the idea of adding Brown would be very exciting.
The Broncos may not have to pay more than a second-round pick for Brown, and he would actually cost less than Emmanuel Sanders on this year’s salary cap.
Sanders is set to count roughly $12.9 million against the Broncos’ 2019 cap, while trading for Brown would add about $12.6 million to the Broncos’ cap.
He is still under contract for three more years and if things didn’t work out, the Broncos would not be on the hook for any guaranteed money on Brown’s deal.
Between the potential of Brown’s on-field impact and the Broncos’ ability to accurately identify whether his personality would be a fit one way or the other on their current roster, their pursuit of him should be monitored with confidence that the team would not be acting on impulse but with a very strong recommendation from coaches who have worked directly with and around Brown, both recently and in the past.