Sportress of Blogitude

Ben Roethlisberger says team effort required to replace Antonio Brown

The Pittsburgh Steelers know Antonio Brown will not be available for Monday night’s Week 16 match-up with the Houston Texans, if not longer, due to what Mike Tomlin has deemed a “significant contusion” in his lower left leg.

And Ben Roethlisberger understands all too well a total team effort will be required to replace Brown’s productivity. Although the veteran signal-caller did acknowledge the team has enough talent in its wide receivers corps to get the job done.

“AB, you can’t replace him with one man,” Roethlisberger told reporters, via “AB is not human. We’ll have multiple guys trying to fill that spot. But I know we have guys who are excited, willing to try and fill those shoes. I think Justin [Hunter] is going to be one, I think Martavis [Bryant] will do some stuff, JuJu [Smith-Schuster]. I mean, everyone really will have to step their game up. That includes me too. I have to be better.”

The Steelers are coming off a devastating loss to the New England Patriots but still are in a favorable position to secure a first-round bye, even if home field advantage throughout the AFC playoffs is an extreme long shot. Although the Steelers need to remain wary of the Jacksonville Jaguars of catching them for the AFC’s No. 2 seed.

A reeling Texans team ought to be a great match-up for the Steelers’ offense in Brown’s absence. And with a Week 17 showdown with the woeful Cleveland Browns, the Steelers arguably could opt to sit Brown for the season finale as well.

The Steelers then simply have to hold out hope Brown will be healthy for the postseason. A bye certainly would come in handy in that regard.