Brandon Boykin's phone started buzzing this morning. His brother was "fired up" when he called.
There was an article in the (Washington and Greene Counties) Observer-Reporter in which Steelers wide receiver Antonio Brown called Boykin the "candy bar" in the Eagles' secondary, meaning the Steelers can take advantage of him.
"That's his opinion," Boykin said Thursday. "That's funny to me. We're just going to continue doing what we've been doing as a secondary, and me as well."
Boykin said he didn't understand the joke. When he learned it was an insult, he tried to take the high road.
"We'll see on Sunday," Boykin said. "The game's on Sunday. There's no point in rah-rahing in the media on Thursday. I'll let my game do the talking."
Boykin even said it's a good thing that other receivers are taking a notice of him. He knows that teams are going to try to take advantage of him because he's a rookie fourth-round pick in the slot, and Pro Bowlers Dominique Rodgers-Cromartie and Nnamdi Asomugha are on the outside. Boykin has welcomed that challenge through four games, and has defended the likes of Larry Fitzgerald and Victor Cruz.
Boykin did not know if it was Brown's personality to call him out in public. In fact, Boykin said he didn't eve known who Brown was until he started preparing for the game.
"I don't know too much about Antonio Brown," Boykin said. "I just found out who he was this week."
Boykin has never been called out before. He said it doesn't happen in college, but players have more leeway in the NFL. He figured that Brown is trying to get into his head, but Boykin said it's not going to affect how he plays.
"It's good he's pointing me out and it's not doing anythng other than giving me a little more attention," Boykin said. "I got to go out and do what I do. And if I do right, he's actually helped me in a sense. So tell him I appreciate it."
So Boykin's first foray into NFL public trash talking went as smooth as possible. He recognized it was an insult, but he did not want to trade public barbs with Brown.
"It's up to me to do what I got to do to make sure they don't treat me like a candy bar, or whatever they said," Boykin said.