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Brown posted a tweet that noted it was “time to move on and forward” alongside the hashtag #NewDemands and a video that appeared to be a goodbye to Pittsburgh fans:
Antonio Brown @AB84
Thank you SteelerNation for a big 9 years…time to move on and forward……….✌🏽 #NewDemands https://t.co/fbIoFNdqK4
According to ESPN’s Adam Schefter, Brown sent the tweet after he formally requested a trade. However, the Steelers have not yet agreed to a swap and have not agreed to release the 30-year-old.
Brown and the Steelers have been heading toward a divorce since he was benched for the final game of the year for skipping a practice in late December. While Brown and the Steelers have had a strained relationship before, they generally reconciled concerns.
This offseason, however, it’s apparently hit a tipping point.
Jeremy Fowler of ESPN.com reported in early January: “Signs point to a power struggle. Brown and [Mike] Tomlin appear to have issues to sort through, and his relationship with Ben Roethlisberger remains under the microscope.”
“This has been going on for a while, but this year it’s gotten worse,” a team source told Fowler at the time about Brown’s souring relationship with the Steelers. “People have covered it up, and it’s not getting covered up anymore.”
As for where Brown could end up, a number of teams will surely have interest in adding an elite wide receiver. Jacksonville’s Jalen Ramsey and Arizona‘s Patrick Peterson were already stumping for Brown to join the Jaguars on Tuesday via Twitter:
It’s unclear where Brown, a seven-time Pro Bowler, will play next season. But it appears increasingly unlikely it will be in Pittsburgh.