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Rooney: Antonio Brown's antics are 'little annoyances'

Steelers president Art Rooney II does not think wide receiver Antonio Brown has crossed over into detrimental to the team status.

At least that was the sentiment conveyed in an interview given to local reporters on Tuesday, in which Rooney mentioned that Brown's recent issues have amounted to "little annoyances, with the emphasis on little." Brown, as everyone well knows, live streamed a locker room scene and post-game speech given by head coach Mike Tomlin after the team's victory over Kansas City in the AFC divisional round.

"Antonio is a good guy, a good person," Rooney said, via the Post-Gazette. "I enjoy him personally. He's someone his teammates like to have on the team."

Rooney added that he's spoken with Ben Roethlisberger and thinks his quarterback will return for the 2017 season, noting that his comments about retirement might have been the product of frustration after losing to the Patriots.

Rooney's words served as a bit of cold water on the recent series of small fires breaking out in Pittsburgh. While the Steelers remain one of the most enviably consistent franchises in football, they did watch one of their star players commit an egregious public error down the stretch, which apparently revealed that not all was well beneath the surface. Roethlisberger's remarks a week ago did not help the perception that, collectively, the organization needed to take a step back and breathe.

The Steelers have an enviable roster construction at the moment and are good enough to walk back into the AFC Championship Game next year assuming Le'Veon Bell remains healthy and agrees to play under the franchise tag, which NFL Network Insider Ian Rapoport noted is the most likely course of action. Brown is a big part of this, too, and seems to have learned his lesson after a week-long apology tour.

But that's also assuming everything in Pittsburgh will blow over, like Rooney thinks it will.

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