Steelers' Diontae Johnson: 'No Bad Blood' with Mitch Trubisky After Heated Exchange

Rob Goldberg@@TheRobGoldbergFeatured Columnist IVOctober 19, 2022

ORCHARD PARK, NEW YORK - OCTOBER 09: Diontae Johnson #18 of the Pittsburgh Steelers runs against the Buffalo Bills at Highmark Stadium on October 09, 2022 in Orchard Park, New York. (Photo by Timothy T Ludwig/Getty Images)
Timothy T Ludwig/Getty Images

Speaking to reporters Wednesday, Pittsburgh Steelers wide receiver Diontae Johnson discussed the reported heated exchange with quarterback Mitchell Trubisky in Week 4:

Brooke Pryor @bepryor

Diontae Johnson seemingly confirms that an argument between him and Mitch Trubisky did take place at halftime of the Jets game, but he declined to get into specifics/ if it contributed to Trubisky's benching.<br><br>"We're both passionate about the game. Stuff happens during football." <a href="https://t.co/a6EimLPvk5">pic.twitter.com/a6EimLPvk5</a>

"There's no bad blood between us at all," Johnson said. "It's just us being football players at times and we're not gonna let that stop us from achieving the goal that everybody is trying to achieve around here."

This seemingly confirms reports of a locker room confrontation between the two at halftime during the Oct. 2 loss to the New York Jets, per Gerry Dulac of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. Trubisky was benched for the second half in favor of rookie Kenny Pickett.

Steelers coach Mike Tomlin refused to answer questions about the reported dispute Tuesday.

"Our business is our business and I understand in today's climate, oftentimes there's leaks, our business getting the street," Tomlin said. "But I'm not gonna acknowledge it or confirm it or deny it in these settings."

Pickett made the team's next two starts before suffering a head injury Sunday, allowing Trubisky to return and lead the Steelers to a 20-18 victory over the Tampa Bay Buccaneers.

Tomlin said Pickett will start if healthy and the quarterback is currently "on track" to play, according to Mark Kaboly of The Athletic.

Johnson did see a season-high 13 targets in Pickett's lone full game this year, although the wideout still only finished with five catches for 60 yards in a 38-3 loss to the Buffalo Bills. It's been a disappointing year for the Pro Bowler, who has yet to score a touchdown and has just 33 catches for 295 yards.

After averaging 72.6 receiving yards per game in 2021, Johnson is only averaging 49.2 yards per game this year.

The 26-year-old will hope to get on the same page with whoever lines up under center in Week 7 against the Miami Dolphins.


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