Will Antonio Brown Succeed At Oakland Raiders?
Antonio Brown’s move to the Oakland Raiders has been one of the biggest stories to hit the NFL during a tumultuous off-season.
Brown demanded to leave the Pittsburgh Steelers after nine years at the club. The seven-time Pro Bowler reportedly refused to play in their final match of the 2018 campaign due to fears over exacerbating an injury problems.
The 30-year-old’s relationship with quarterback Ben Roethlisberger broke down, and the Steelers’ hierarchy was unable to convince him to remain with the AFC North outfit. General manager Kevin Colbert made it widely known that the wideout was available on the trade market.
Pittsburgh were never going to trade their asset to any of their elite rivals in the AFC Conference, ruling out the Baltimore Ravens, Kansas City Chiefs and the New England Patriots. As a result, their options on the market were limited, especially due to the size of Brown’s contract.
The Raiders were one of the few teams that were able to take on the salary. Their offer of a third and a fifth-round pick in the 2019 Draft was accepted by the Steelers, resulting in the departure of Brown after nine successful seasons in Pittsburgh.
Brown’s departure could change the landscape in the AFC Conference. Particularly the fortunes of two franchises involved in the deal as well as the player, who has been the leading wideout in the league over the past five years.
The Raiders were in dire need of a statement signing ahead of their move to Las Vegas in the 2020 season. Oakland were able to lure Jon Gruden back to the coaching ranks last term, although his first campaign back in charge of the club was underwhelming to say the least.
It appeared to be a rebuilding effort from the off as he opted to trade away former defensive player of the year Khalil Mack and then number one wideout Amari Cooper for first-round picks in the 2019 Draft. It did affect the club’s performance on the field, finishing with a 4-12 record.
However, there’s optimism that the Raiders can bounce back with Brown in the fold without having to use one of their three first-round picks to acquire his services. Brown will give quarterback Derek Carr an elite wideout down the field. The 30-year-old can run all the routes in the tree, whether it’s going deep or taking a short pass for a huge gain. He’s a threat on every single passing play, which could help Carr get back to his MVP form of the 2016 season.
It’s going to take more than Brown in the passing game to get the Raiders back into the playoffs. The Kansas City Chiefs still loom large in the AFC West. However, their prospects of winning over six matches at -130 with TopBet should be considered.
The Steelers were put into a corner by two of their star players over the last year. Le’Veon Bell was the first as he sat out the entire 2018 campaign before leaving in free agency. Brown then demanded a move from the club and departed to the Raiders.
Pittsburgh were not impacted a great deal by Bell’s decision as James Conner rose to the occasion, although his injury late in the campaign proved to be crucial. Brown’s exit could be more problematic given the lack of depth the club have at wide receiver. JuJu Smith-Schuster was outstanding last term and will rise up to the number one receiver position.
However, outside of him there are a lot of unknowns. James Washington was a second-round pick last term, but didn’t do a great deal in his rookie season. Donte Moncrief has been signed, although he has not pulled up trees in his NFL career. Roethlisberger has not been known to be one of the more patient quarterbacks. At the age of 36, he will not want to waste time breaking in new receivers. Colbert is under pressure to surround his quarterback with talent for the 2019 season.
Given the moves that have been made elsewhere in the AFC North, notably by the Cleveland Browns. It could result in another year of disappointment in Pittsburgh, although there could be enough talent to win another nine games at odds of -130 with TopBet.
Brown got the move that he asked for from the Steelers, although he may have wished for a better team to be traded to than the Raiders. He could be in for a shock between the difference in quality between Carr and Roethlisberger.
The Steelers quarterback has been a perennial Pro Bowler, while Carr has been up-and-down throughout his five-year career, albeit one season where he did produce exemplary play. Brown has been a statistical juggernaut, recording six-straight campaigns of over 100 receptions and 1,000 yards. He scored 15 touchdowns last season, which is four fewer than Carr threw in total.
If the play of Brown unlocks the best of Carr’s potential along with the coaching of Gruden, the wideout will remain at the top of the NFL’s statistics charts. However, given the Raiders’ struggles last season they’re not going to be able to make a huge turnaround in one year.
Back Brown to score under nine touchdowns at -115 and under 1,100 receiving yards at +120 with BetOnline. Receptions are equal on the market and can be a deceptive statistic. He has been trending at the 100-catch mark for the last three seasons, but take Brown on the under at -115 .
Antonio Brown To Record Under Nine Touchdowns
Antonio Brown To Record Under 1,100 Receiving Yards
Antonio Brown To Record Under 95 Receptions
Oakland Raiders To Win Over Six Matches
Pittsburgh Steelers To Win Nine Matches Or Over
- Antonio Brown
- Ben Roethlisberger
- Oakland Raiders
- Pittsburgh Steelers