INDIANAPOLIS — Pittsburgh Steelers general manager Kevin Colbert was non-committal Wednesday when it came to wide receiver Antonio Brown’s future while holding a news conference at the NFL Scouting Combine.
Colbert kept open the possibility that Brown, who has requested to be traded, could be back in a Steelers uniform next season. He also said the Steelers haven’t eliminated any teams from the Brown trade sweepstakes.
“Ideally, you want to trade him to somebody you’ll never play which you can’t do that because if you’re good enough to get to a Super Bowl, you’ll have to play him anyway,” Colbert said. “The less you would play him, the better, but if a team comes through with the best compensation, we have to balance that out.
“‘OK, we’re going to play him twice a year, but we’re going to get the best compensation,’ so it’s our job to do the better job with the compensation. And you have to weigh that all into the discussion, so we haven’t eliminated anybody.”
While it seems highly unlikely the Steelers would trade Brown to the Patriots, one of their biggest rivals, Colbert left the option open. When asked if the Patriots had expressed interest in Brown, Colbert said he wouldn’t reveal any teams who have reached out.
Colbert said the Steelers only will trade Brown if it benefits the franchise.
“If there’s something done to benefit both sides, great,” Colbert said. “If not, then we’ll deal with that when we get to it.”
Colbert also revealed interest in Brown has increased since he last addressed the talented wide receiver.
“The last time I spoke, I think I said three teams,” Colbert said. “What I would say is that interest has grown. And it’ll continue to go one way or the other because as we’re here at the combine we’re learning about alternatives to your current team.”
Thumbnail photo via Philip G. Pavely/USA TODAY Sports Images