The Pittsburgh Steelers have received calls about the availability of Martavis Bryant from several teams, despite the team reportedly making it clear they have not intentions of trading the disgruntled receiver.
According to NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport, contending NFL teams have recently called the Steelers about possibly becoming a trade partner to acquire Bryant.
“They have not said yes, yet, but keep an eye on this and I’ve been told that the Patriots we’re among the teams that called on Bryant during the draft,” Rapoport said Sunday morning.
Bryant, who had a social media outburst Sunday night following the Steelers Week 7 win over the Cincinnati Bengals, brought unwanted drama to the Steelers locker room on Tuesday when he told ESPN’s Josina Anderson that he “got to move on” at the trade deadline if the team doesn’t want him to contribute to the offense.
“I just want to be happy, whether it’s here or it’s somewhere else,” Bryant told Anderson. “I just want to help contribute. I just want to be the best player that I can on and off the field … and I want to be given the chance to be that. But I would like for it to be here. If not, then, oh well. Just got to move on.
“I’m not being selfish, it’s just I want to help contribute & I want to be the best player that I can be. By the end of whenever the trade deadline is … I mean if things don’t get better, then I got to go.”
Steelers head coach Mike Tomlin later said that Bryant “was out of bounds with some of his actions in terms of the things that he said on social media. It will be dealt with appropriately. That ball is in my court. I haven’t visited with him yet. To be honest with you, I haven’t visited with him yet because I’ve had bigger fish to fry.”
Bryant was informed by Tomlin on Wednesday that he had been demoted to the scout team and would be inactive for Sunday night’s matchup against the Detroit Lions due to his Instagram outburst that included him saying that he’s a better player than rookie wide receiver JuJu Smith-Schuster.
Bryant said if the Steelers don’t trade him and the issue isn’t resolved, then he’ll “just play next year out” until his contract is fulfilled.
“I feel like it’s going to come down to whether we make changes or not, whether they try to include me more or not,” Bryant said. “If they don’t try to include me more and continue to do the same thing, then I want out, period.
I’m not going to re-sign. … I’m not tripping.”
It’s unclear how long Bryant will be on the scout team, but for now he has traded places on the depth chart with Ramon Hunter, who has been inactive for most of this season.