Pittsburgh Steelers wide receiver Antonio Brown, hoping to put to rest any lingering controversy surrounding Mike Tomlin's expletive-laced speech he streamed live on Sunday, apologised for creating a "distraction" ahead of this weekend's AFC championship game.
Following the Steelers' 18-16 divisional playoff win over the Kansas City Chiefs, Brown posted 17 minutes of raw footage from the team's locker room to Facebook Live, inadvertently capturing Tomlin's post-game speech and broadcasting it to millions.
Tomlin, who was heard in the video referring to their AFC championship opponents the New England Patriots as "those a**holes," also apologised on Tuesday and said he regretted his remarks. He called Brown "foolish" and "selfish" and said the star wideout would be punished in-house this week.
"I let my emotions and genuine excitement get the best of me, and I wanted to share that moment with our fans," Brown said in a statement posted to his Twitter account.
"It was wrong of me to do, against team and NFL policy, and I have apologised to Coach Tomlin and my team-mates for my actions.
"I'm sorry to them for letting it become a distraction and something that they've had to answer questions about while we're preparing for a big game on Sunday."
Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger said he was "a little disappointed" in Brown's decision to violate the Steelers' "sacred place" inside the locker room, but he downplayed the video having any impact when the Steelers travel to Gillette Stadium to play the Patriots for the AFC title on Sunday.
It's possible the NFL could also fine Brown if it finds him to be in violation of the league's social media policy, which prohibits players from posting to social media until after media interviews are conducted.