Antonio Brown Says Ben Roethlisberger Scolded Him For Being Selfish After The Season

Pittsburgh Steelers wide receiver Antonio Brown caught 110 passes in 2013, but with three more he would have broken the franchise single-season record that Hines Ward set in 2002. During a Monday appearance on ESPN’s “Highly Questionable“, Brown admitted that in the season finale against the Cleveland Browns, that that was likely the maddest he’s ever been with a teammate or coach, because he really wanted to break that record.

“Probably the last game of the season,” admitted Brown. “I knew I was in tune with probably breaking Hines Ward’s record with two more catches, so I think my attitude with getting the ball was a little bit more – my frustration with getting the ball when I was open was a little bit more different than the other games when I was able to control that mentality and able to work with poise under pressure.”

Brown, however, was willing to admit how detrimental those actions were to the team and how they rubbed at least one of his teammates the wrong way.

“I feel like it was selfish,” he said. “You know I got a great quarterback and he loves me, and we’ve got a great relationship, and I think that no one [sic] on our staff didn’t want to help me achieve that record. But when they see that attitude and selfishness, that kind of draws guys away from you. Ben [Roethlisberger] didn’t answer my phone call for about a week. It took a week for him to really respond to me.”

Brown said he tried to reach out several times to Ben Roethlisberger via phone and text from the Pro Bowl in Hawaii to no avail. When he finally did get to talk to his quarterback, Brown said his quarterback pretty much let him have it.

“The first thing he said, ‘Man, I don’t want to talk to you when you’re like that, man. You’re not infectious and contagious when your attitude is like that. I don’t want my son to root for you for you.’ And that’s what meant the most to me when he said, ‘I don’t want my kids to root for you when you’re like that, because here they are watching you as a great player and they got so many positive images in their head about you, and then I got to deal with the attitude.'”

It’s good to know that Roethlisberger put Brown in his place and hopefully the young wide receiver will remember this moving forward. He still managed to break the franchise single-season receiving yardage record that belonged to Yancey Thigpen, so at least he has that feather in his cap.

You can listed to the full interview with Brown that begins around the 7:18 mark in the audio below.


  • steeltown

    Haha.. I can understand some frustration from AB being THAT close to a record, but yea no selfish divas on this Team, please.. the young money crew is pretty much dismantled and it couldnt have happened fast enough IMO the name alone “young money crew” is ill advised being that WRs in Pittsburgh historically don’t receive huge contracts, which I like, the Organization knows that skill position players, especially WR are a dime a dozen. Mike Wallace was the originator of the phrase and I find it funny that of all three guys, AB was the one the Team wanted, the one they locked up long term as quickly as possible

  • T R

    damn on my computer it says the file not found when trying to listen to the full interview..

  • Virdin Barzey

    Funny, I didn’t think Ben had it in him to say something like that to one of the best players on the team. Now he needs to do the same with those linemen. Wish he didn’t wait a week and addressed it earlier but it was probably best. Totally respect AB for taking it on the chin like a man and not do a TO and retaliate. Not to mention he is the one putting the story out there.

    No I in Team. It the way of the Burgh, thought he would have known that by now. Amazed at what fame and attention can do to you. I like to hear things like this on a team but prefer they keep it in-house. Stupid media always looking for controversy to make next headline. Hopefully AB has learned and move on. We need both of these guys if we ever have a chance to get the 7th.

  • 243546

    It’s great that Ben put AB in his place, but AB’s response was even better. He definitely seems like a guy who understands his role on the team beyond the field, and holds himself accountable. That’s the sign of a great player, and more importantly, a great leader.

  • steeltown

    Yea there’ll probably be some NFL nitwit who writes an article in the next couple days telling the tale of A.Brown upset with Ben and Haley for not getting him the ball more

  • Callentown

    Ian Rappaport

  • chris ward

    Great article, Great job by Ben, by being a leader and letting AB know it is not the Steeler way to put yourself before the team. Interesting that Ben didn’t answer is phone call for about a week. Also, good to see that AB acknowledges that his actions were wrong and moving on, he knows to not act selfishly.

  • Melissa Littlefield

    AB’s selfish behavior that’s why he didn’t respond for a week…that Ben had been busy with his family & in Cali doing some fb stuff. Ben’s life doesn’t revolve around his teammates. Ben is my #1

  • NW86

    Yes, I’m pretty disappointed in AB for acting that way. He already broke the single-season yardage record anyway, and the only way for him to get the catch record would have been for Haley and Ben to clearly target him and pump up his stats the final 2 games. Do you really want to break he record that way? I think I’d only want the record if I knew I had earned it while helping my team, not the other way around.
    On the other hand, I’m glad that he admitted he was wrong, and it seems like he really does see that now. AB hasn’t always been the most mature player, but he seems to be aware of himself, and he is maturing each season. That’s all we can ask.

  • James Kling

    I don’t see it as a pattern of selfishness. He got close to the record, he allowed himself to get a swelled head, Ben called him out on it, time to close the book and concentrate on 2014. AB’s a good kid and unlike other divas, he had the maturity to step back and accept that he was acting immaturely. Only bodes well for his future and the future of this offense, IMO.

  • blackandgoldBullion

    Kudos to Ben for reminding AB what he is supposed to be about. I am positive AB knows this deep down because I have seen him speak on many occasions and he does almost always think about his kids and others. The role model idea is very important.

    As much as many of us football fans love to only care about winning for our team, life is more important than football.

  • costanza2k1

    Ben’s telling him not to be selfish and a phone not being picked up….classic

  • RMSteeler

    If I was Ben, I’d have said: “Tone, in 16 games, could you have had 3 less drops?”

  • steeltown

    Well said

  • Kyle Owens

    While it’s always nice to hear your franchise QB is taking a leadership role, I kind of wanted to see AB break that record. I mean, what else did we have to celebrate last year?

  • Nolrog

    Bah, they should have helped him get the record. It’s not like they were competing for a playoff berth.

  • sean mcmartin

    Would have been nice if any Defensive player on the Steelers was trying to break the sack record in the browns game and had shown some regretful desire.

  • treeher

    Still, I would have found it hard not to remind AB of some drops during the season that he should have made, so don’t blame the last game results.

  • RedCarpetDefense

    Ian Crapreport

  • Johnny Loose

    You nailed it there. +1

  • Callentown

    Ha, that’s awesome Red!

  • Shannon Stephenson

    It is understandable that Brown wanted to break the record but you have to do with humility.

  • Paul Barracliffe

    Yea maybe AB will come out humble an stop hot doggin so much too.

  • pittsburghjoe

    Yippee, Ben’s got a nut in the sack.

  • Shawn Sobehart

    Ben’s kids watch him as a great player and have positive images of Brown???? Ben’s son just turned 1 a few months ago and the other child is still in the womb. I think AB made up this story.

  • alex

    Ben becoming a full fledged leader and AB the all pro but still young and like everybody, must be focused 24/7 for himself and his team…

    go go 2014!

  • Madi

    Seriously. “Oh, you’re two catches short, are you? Let’s see, you have 5 drops, so… any math majors here?” That’d be great.