Ex-49ers lineman calls Antonio Brown’s behavior ‘childish’ but would still pursue wide receiver

Steelers star appears headed for exit from Pittsburgh after tumultuous end to season

Karl Buscheck
January 14, 2019 - 12:21 pm

After Jerry Rice called into “Joe, Lo & Dibs” to reveal that Antonio Brown wants to join the 49ers “really badly,” another former Niner chimed in on the topic.

Alex Boone offered a nuanced perspective on the pursuit of Brown. First, the notable concern regarding Brown, who essentially went AWOL before the final game of the regular season, skipping practice after a disagreement with Ben Roethlisberger, as first reported by the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette.

“I think you should always be hesitant — especially when someone’s acting like this with the media,” Boone said on 95.7 The Game. “I’m curious though to see — obviously, we’ve heard a hundred different stories. If he really is mad at Ben because he throws him under the bus, I think that’s a liable to be upset.”

Related: Jerry Rice: Antonio Brown wants to play for the 49ers ‘really bad’

“But I think missing practices and leaving the game at halftime, I think that’s childish. I think that’s things high schoolers would do. And as pros, you need to be above that.”

Boone said the 49ers need to figure out where Brown’s head is at, do some digging with the Steelers front office and, ultimately, engineer a sit-down between GM John Lynch and Brown.

“I think that John and him get into a room, I think that could be a great relationship — especially with the quarterback, Jimmy Garoppolo? I mean, come on, man. That’s exciting. It’s hard not to want to be aggressive for this and to want and go out and make a big splash.

“And show the fans that you’re into it and that you’re ready to win and you want to win now.”

Jump  to the 23:03 mark for the full interview with Boone  and skip to the 24-minute mark for his comments on Brown:

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