ALAMEDA, Calif. — Saying his final aim is to move Jerry Rice because the NFL’s all-time main receiver, a mellow Antonio Brown additionally talked about bringing a better stage of accountability to his teammates whereas being praised for his legendary on-field work ethic throughout his introductory information convention as the most recent member of the Oakland Raiders on Wednesday.
Brown, who turns 31 on July 10, additionally referred to Raiders coach Jon Gruden as a father determine of kinds.
“Mr. Gruden performed every part in my determination coming right here,” Brown stated on the staff facility. “Clearly, he is an offensive guru. You get excited simply speaking with him. He is bought a lot data of the sport. He is coached among the biggest gamers ever, so he is aware of what it takes.
“He did his homework on me. He carried out seen each play I’ve performed in … he does not wish to speak about what you are doing properly; he at all times needs to deal with the issues that you may even do that rather more higher. When you have got a coach like that, it is like your dad — you wish to be round as a result of you recognize he is not going to construct you up for what you are doing [well], he will encourage you on the way you at all times may be higher.”
The Raiders will signal Tyrell Williams to pair with Antonio Brown on their new-look vast receiver depth chart.
In a flurry of weekend choices, the Raiders introduced again Hankins, a strong, if unspectatular starter and Harris, a key backup.
It was a decidedly kinder, gentler Brown than Pittsburgh Steelers followers noticed towards the top of final season and early this offseason, when his nine-season tenure that included seven Professional Bowls and 4 first-team All-Professional picks got here to an finish.
Gone was the gold-dyed mustache — he stated he needed to be extra “skilled” — and there have been no histrionics in his arrival — no helicopter touchdown or Fb Reside stream — even when the information convention did begin about 25 minutes late.
Brown and his household, with agent Drew Rosenhaus, walked into the staff auditorium with Gruden and new Raiders normal supervisor Mike Mayock a couple of minutes after the commerce was made official in a information launch — Brown to the Raiders for Oakland’s third- and fifth-round draft picks this 12 months, Nos. 66 and 141 general — saying the deal that was struck Saturday evening.
Mayock stated the Raiders didn’t get entangled with Brown till Friday evening, after his proposed commerce to the Buffalo Payments fell aside earlier within the day.
“He’s nearly as good of a follow soccer participant and works as onerous as any soccer participant I’ve ever seen in my life,” Mayock stated of Brown.
And this from Gruden: “We do not wish to have an excellent receiving corps; I wish to have the very best receiving corps in soccer. And I feel, to have the very best, you have to have the very best; and in my view, we acquired the very best vast receiver in soccer. And let’s get to work.
New Oakland Raiders vast receiver Antonio Brown was all smiles throughout his introductory information convention on Wednesday after his commerce from the Pittsburgh Steelers turned official. AP Picture/Ben Margot
“He is carried out every part in his energy to be the very best he can presumably be, on and off the sector. His physique of labor will not be solely spectacular, it is enjoyable to observe. He is electrifying after the catch, he is an amazing competitor, he wins the 50/50 ball, he is excellent briefly areas. You might have an amazing creativeness as a soccer coach while you coach a person like this. He can play break up finish, he can play flank or he can play within the slot. He can return punts and promote popcorn at halftime. We’re enthusiastic about this man.”
Gruden stated he and Mayock, together with their wives, Cindy and Mandy, had been in Las Vegas Friday evening to attend an occasion with Raiders proprietor Mark Davis.
“As a substitute of getting a pleasant date, a double date, we dated Rosenhaus and Antonio Brown,” Gruden stated with fun. “By no means noticed our wives, however it’s as pleased as Cindy and Mandy have been since we have recognized them.”
Gruden and Mayock are simply as thrilled with Brown reinvigorating the Raiders’ offense (Oakland additionally agreed to phrases with former Chargers receiver Tyrell Williams on Wednesday). Brown and Rosenhaus renegotiated the three years remaining on his contract in order that they’re value $50.125 million, with incentives that may enhance the worth to $54.125 million, and $30.125 million assured.
Brown has averaged 114 catches for 1,524 yards the previous six seasons. No Raiders receiver in franchise historical past has ever reached both of these marks in a single season.
Since 2014, Brown’s 576 receptions are 52 greater than another participant within the NFL. His 59 receiving touchdowns are 14 greater than anybody else, and his 2,204 receiving yards and 21 TDs within the fourth quarter are each NFL highs.
Jordy Nelson led Oakland’s receivers with 63 catches for 739 yards and three touchdowns.
“My plan is to get round right here, get within the room, begin holding guys accountable, allow them to know it is a sure sort of normal right here now that we bought to uphold,” Brown stated. “Receivers, we want an accountability system — drops, [being] late, fines, missed routes, missed sights. We’ll maintain one another accountable; and should you do not fall in that accountability, you get fined.
“And so when [quarterback] Derek Carr walks within the room, he sees all of the receivers — this man owes this, this man owes this — so everybody has that accountability issue. As a result of if everybody’s held accountable, we have to be at a sure commonplace. So I am simply right here to set sure requirements, maintain guys accountable, and simply uplift the custom of — it is unacceptable to simply accept not our greatest. That is sort of my perspective. We’re nonetheless shaping the staff. I am unable to do all of it in someday, however simply as a primary begin, to kick off me being right here and us doing a little constructive issues transferring ahead.”
Brown can be in a singular scenario in that he’ll play one season in Oakland, as long as the Coliseum Fee votes to approve the lease on Friday, earlier than transferring to Las Vegas in 2020.
“For me to be in Oakland, a part of the Oakland Raiders, and being on the final staff that may ever be right here in Oakland is one thing particular in itself,” he stated. “There’s strain in that, there’s pleasure in that and there is a lot that comes with that. And I am right here right this moment able to embrace all that.”
Requested if he had any regrets on how he dealt with issues on the finish in Pittsburgh, Brown targeted on younger followers.
“To any child on the market from Pittsburgh, Pittsburgh will at all times be my household,” Brown stated. “These guys gave me an opportunity once I was a 21-year-old child. Clearly, individuals are listening to the issues which can be being stated and written. On the finish of the day, it is all about the way you make individuals really feel. I feel I made individuals really feel good and nice, actually impressed, the way in which they watched me work, the way in which they watched me play. I do know Steeler Nation is having a nasty day right this moment, however it’s at all times love. I encourage each child who watched me work and was impressed by every part I’ve carried out. I hope I proceed to be an excellent instance, proceed to be an excellent position mannequin and proceed to encourage individuals.”
And for his private finish recreation, Brown sits at No. 28 on the NFL’s all-time receptions checklist with 837 catches. Certain, there are solely three energetic gamers with extra catches — Antonio Gates (955), Brandon Marshall (970) and Larry Fitzgerald (1,303) — however Brown continues to be 712 away from Rice, who additionally performed one season for Gruden, and his 1,549 receptions
“My aim actually is to catch Jerry Rice,” Brown stated. “Enjoying with a man like Coach Gruden, clearly, he is aware of what it takes to maintain me upright and recent. Maintain me on the market for a very long time so it is a problem yearly to show my love for the sport. I am simply taking it one 12 months at a time.
“Clearly, my aim at the back of my thoughts is to catch Jerry Rice. Yearly, I’ve to show my love. This 12 months I am out right here to show my love.”