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PITTSBURGH, PA - NOVEMBER 15: Antonio Brown #84 of the Pittsburgh Steelers scores a 2-point conversion during the 2nd quarter of the game against the Cleveland Browns at Heinz Field on November 15, 2015 in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. (Photo by Jared Wickerham/Getty Images)

Antonio Brown Shoots Down Trade To Buffalo

On Friday night, rumors surfaced that the Buffalo Bills and the Pittsburgh Steelers were closing in on a trade that would provide Pro Bowl wide receiver Antonio Brown with a change of scenery.

However, those talks soon fell apart. Hours after the deal was reported to be “very close” Brown reportedly shot down the trade. The two teams had almost worked out a deal with compensation still being negotiation when AB’s agent, Drew Rosenhaus, was notified. Brown made it clear that he wanted to be traded but not to Buffalo. Talks fell apart soon after.

“We inquired about Antonio Brown on Tuesday, and kept talks open with the Steelers,” Bills general manager Brandon Beane told ESPN. “We had positive discussions, but ultimately it didn’t make sense for either side. As great a player as Antonio Brown is, we have moved on and our focus is on free agency.”

The trade elicited responses around the league. Brown called the trade “fake news” on Instagram. Others said that if the news was fake, it may have been maneuvering done by Beane to find out who he could trust in the front office.

Regardless, the trade indicates a clear shift in Pittsburgh. Just two weeks ago the front office was adamant that Brown would have no say in where he was traded to. This incident makes it very clear that he can influence what stadium he’ll call home next season.

Former NFL executive Gil Brandt recalled how players used to be threatened with being sent “to Siberia, aka Green Bay if they asked for a trade.” He wondered if Buffalo had taken the crown as the least appealing ci\ty to play in.

However, some around the league see promise in the Bills. One league reporter wrote, “Save your Buffalo / Bills jokes. Buffalo is an amazing, passionate NFL city. Great fans. Great place to play. Josh Allen is going to be great. Bills moving in right direction and are closer to playoffs than Steelers. Shame on AB. Not surprising but shameful.” It’s also important to note that the Bills are just a year removed from a playoff berth.

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Written by Bill Piersa