That is who I think of when I think of chess. Probably the most brilliant chess player ever.
You’re probably thinking what does this even have to do with Antonio Brown? Well, when it comes to football and how to run an organization, the Steelers are the Bobby Fischer of the NFL.
This week started the beginning of Steelers training camp. Everyone speculated whether Mike Wallace would show up to camp. That was the buzz among the NFL with the Steelers. Everyone was talking about it. And while everyone was talking about Mike, the Steelers focused on who NO ONE was talking about. Antonio Brown. While everyone was talking about how the Steelers stopped negotiations with Wallace, they were quietly negotiating a new contract with Antonio Brown. A 5-year $42.5 million dollar deal. A deal that was supposedly also offered to Mike Wallace, which he turned down.
I expected the Steelers to hold off on negotiating with Brown until next year. First, and obviously, because of Mike Wallace. Second, because AB wouldn’t have become a restricted free agent until next year.
Brown has become a key component to the offense of this team. With his 1,108 receiving yards, and his 1,062 kickoff/punt return yards, he was the team’s MVP last season. He has the potential to be one of the top receivers in a few years. And he’ll be with the Steelers until 2017, so here’s to hoping he’s in his prime in Pittsburgh.
As for Wallace, I still think a deal gets done with him. This might light a fire under him. He could take a page out of Antonio Brown’s book. Hell, he should look into hiring Drew Rosenhaus. But it sends a very clear message from the Steelers that they aren’t going to wait around for him. If he doesn’t show up to camp, if he doesn’t show up until Week 10, the Steelers won’t blink.
He is, after all, playing a game of chess with Bobby Fischer.
Your move, Mike.