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Antonio Brown on criticism from Ben Roethlisberger: ‘I can take it’

Ben Roethlisberger made some critical comments earlier this week about a few teammates, among other things, and one of the players targeted is doing his part to mitigate the fallout.

Antonio Brown downplayed the Roethlisberger situation while speaking with reporters Friday. The Pittsburgh Steelers wide receiver pointed out while it’s not his responsibility to do so, it’s Big Ben’s prerogative to do it his way.

“It’s not my job to criticize guys. Only for guys to get better,” Brown said, via ESPN’s Jeremy Fowler. “[Roethlisberger’s] the general. He’s the captain. I’m not the captain. His method to his madness will only help us get better. You’re going to see us get better.”

The original comments that caused the stir came during Roethlisberger’s weekly appearance Tuesday on Pittsburgh radio. Brown, fellow wideout James Washington and offensive coordinator Randy Fichtner’s play-calling were among the targets of Roethlisberger’s ire.

Brown specifically was criticized by Roethlisberger for not running a “flat” route on a late interception during a loss to the Denver Broncos last Sunday.

Roethlisberger refused to back down from the criticism when provided the opportunity Wednesday, arguing that he’s “earned the right” to do so. Brown made it clear he harbors no ill will towards his longtime Steelers teammate over the public airing of grievances.

“Ben’s my guy, man. I love him. Anything he says, there’s a method to his madness,” Brown said. “It’s only to inspire the group, encourage the group to be better. That’s the type of guy he is.

“I don’t know if it’s been misconstrued or changed in regards to how you guys put it out there, but he means well. … He’s the only one in this locker room that’s probably got a championship under his belt.”

Brown, meanwhile, added he can handle anything Roethlisberger throws his way, both on and off the field.

“I’ve got big shoulders. I can take it,” Brown said. “Constructive criticism is only for you to get better. It’s not personal.”