Bryant: 'I learned a lot about myself'


Martavis Bryant walked out of the Steelers' locker room on Monday after practice in his uniform, looking like he was ready for game day.

As anxious as he appeared, he will still have to wait a week until the Steelers play the San Diego Chargers on Monday Night Football, but he is definitely excited and ready to go after returning from a four-game NFL suspension.

"It feels great," said Bryant, who actually had the uniform on for photo that needed taken. "I've been through a lot these last few weeks, so it feels good to be back."

Bryant was suspended for violating the league's substance abuse policy, and the issue wasn't just about him missing games, but more importantly about him getting the help and guidance he needed.

"I sought out help outside of the facility to be more focused," said Bryant, who said he spent three weeks getting treatment in Houston. "Now, I'm back here focused and better prepared to move forward with my career.

"I learned a lot about myself, especially from the mistakes I've made. Just learning from my mistakes and how to prevent mistakes from happening. Just about becoming a better man. I learned from it and I just want to move forward. I'm going to put everything in the past and work on becoming better from it, and a better football player."

Bryant said he communicated with quarterback Ben Roethlisberger every morning during the time, something that was a huge help for the young receiver.

"I highly appreciate him doing that, taking the time to text me every morning," said Bryant. "Especially, during the season when he was focused on his job."

The Steelers prepare for the week 5 contest against the San Diego Chargers.

During the counseling he was working out twice a day, lifting weights, conditioning and catching passes from his trainer. All of it in an effort to be ready for his return to the field this week.

"Whatever they need me to do, I'm here to help," said Bryant. "I'm going to give it my all, practice and work hard. If I work hard in practice, everything will transfer over into the game.

"I've been playing football since I was six years old. * *It's not different to me. Once I'm back, I'm back. I'm ready to get focused on what I need to do."

Bryant said it wasn't easy to watch the first four games, but he did to support his teammates and get out of it what he could. It also gave him an additional chance to see quarterback Mike Vick, who he worked well with in the preseason and will be catching passes from this week.

"We have a lot of work to do this week in practice to get ready for Monday," said Bryant. "We're going to keep developing our chemistry and just make sure we are ready on Monday.

"I feel like he has more confidence in me, knowing that I'm going to be there to have his back. Just like I was there for Ben. We just have to continue to work and progress."

This article has been reproduced in a new format and may be missing content or contain faulty links. Please use the Contact Us link in our site footer to report an issue.