PITTSBURGH (AP) - Antonio Brown didn’t need to verbalize the answer. It was written all over his face.
When asked if his eyes light up knowing, as the Pittsburgh Steelers‘ return man, he’ll face a team on Sunday that allowed a kickoff and a punt return for touchdowns last week, his eyes, well, simply lit up.
“Definitely, man,” Brown said.
Indeed, it’s tough to not notice that the Seattle Seahawks (0-1) watched San Francisco’s Ted Ginn take two returns for scores in the final four minutes of a 33-17 loss at San Francisco. There were holes, there were missed chances, and make no mistake, Ginn made some moves. But two returns in four minutes?
“It’s like the standard has been set, and that gives you motivation to come out and meet that same standard,” Brown said, “knowing they will, of course, make some changes. But knowing that we’ve still got an opportunity to make some big plays in an area where they may be lacking.”
Brown believes he and the team’s return unit can provide it.
“Ginn’s really good, he had some great blocks provided, and he made the right reads on his cuts,” Brown said. “I think if I can make some good reads, I know my blockers will set really good, so I think we’re going to have a real good opportunity this week.”
Brown has emerged as the Steelers‘ go-to return man for punts and kickoffs in his second season. He had a 41-yard kickoff return on Sunday and a 51-yard return during the preseason. The first time he officially touched the ball as an NFL player, Brown had an 89-yard return for a touchdown in Week 2 last season.
Kind of like Ginn, who has six returns for touchdowns over four full seasons and one game. Everest said Ginn’s kick return was an individual effort in which he took a broken play and outran everyone. The punt return was, according to Everest, more about execution.
Everest noted that two of the Seahawks‘ special teams players are injured, which hurt the unit. He also said that the kickoff coverage team was undisciplined in its lanes during the touchdown return, an assertion Seattle coach Pete Carroll agreed with.
“It was such a shock for us to break down like that,” Carroll said. “It was almost unbelievable for us. So we are going to go back to the things we know how to do, and take care of business and try to eliminate the big bust that happened.
“I did note that the whole league had problems, and obviously we contributed to that. But I think it was the most returns in a week of NFL play in the history of the league. So, something is up, and we just have to make sure that it is not going to happen again on our end.”View Entire Story
By Douglas Holtz-Eakin
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