LATROBE, Pa. – For the past three weeks they have sweated it out on the practice fields together, sat in meetings with each other, and lived, ate, and breathed football as a unit.
But training camp at Saint Vincent College has come to an end for the most part, and receiver Antonio Brown likes what the offense has accomplished.
"I think we have taken some great strides," said Brown. "We still have a long way to go until the regular season starts. But for the most part we took some positive steps."
Brown would like to see some of the team's young receivers step up to make a name for themselves over the next three preseason games, but there is one he has been very impressed with, Sammie Coates.
"I love the potential that he has," said Brown. "He is a playmaker. He can do it all as far as the wide receiver position. He can run after the catch. He has big catch radius. He has a lot of potential. It's up to him to go out there and unlock it and I think he will."
While Brown said Coates can do it all, he clearly could be referring to himself with that description, and well actually has. Brown made a nice over the shoulder sideline catch in practice on Monday and walking back to the huddle was vocal saying, "I can do it all."
"You have to be accountable to do it all," said Brown. "You have to have versatility. You have to be able to go inside and outside. You have to have a big catch radius."
You also have to be willing to work your tail off to get to the point where you can do it all. And Brown certainly does that.
Hall of Fame wide receiver James Lofton was talking about Brown during enshrinement weekend, and recalled watching him last year in the Hall of Fame game. While Brown didn't play in the game, Lofton noticed him every timeout throughout the game running sprints on the sidelines. It's something he did again last week when he didn't play against the Lions.
Brown ran 10 100-yard gassers with his pads on along with William Gay.
"I always want to prepare even though I am not out there getting the reps," said Brown. "I always want my body to be ready to go when it's time to go. In a couple of weeks I am going to take all of the reps so I want to continue to keep my body ready, in condition even when I am not playing. I need to continue to keep my wind up and energy up. I want to be ready when it's time to go."