The New England Patriots released wide receiver Antonio Brown on Friday, just two days before their Week 3 matchup with the New York Jets at Gillette Stadium.
Brown’s agent, Drew Rosenhaus, released the following statement shortly after the Patriots announced their decision:
And so ends a tumultuous 11-day tenure for Brown, who signed with the Patriots after an unceremonious release from the Oakland Raiders. It’s fair to wonder whether any team will pursue the former Pittsburgh Steelers superstar given the off-the-field headache that would come with such a move, but Brown evidently wants to continue playing football. (XFL, anyone?)
If he does sign elsewhere, Brown might regret encouraging Tom Brady and the Patriots to “#GoWinIt” via social media after his release. After all, New England defeated Pittsburgh 33-3 in its season opener without Brown, and the AB signing seemed like an on-field luxury from the start given the talent already in place on the Patriots’ offense.
For now, Brown has bigger fish to fry. Already one of the league’s most controversial players, Brown was accused of sexual assault and rape in a civil lawsuit filed by former trainer Britney Taylor shortly after he signed with New England. Then, on Monday, Sports Illustrated published a bombshell report in which a female artist accused Brown of sexual misconduct in 2017.
As if these allegations weren’t enough, the artist since has said she received “intimidating” texts from Brown in wake of the SI story. Robert Klemko, who wrote the original SI story, shared screenshots of a group text in which one individual, allegedly Brown, called for associates to do background research on the woman.
Thumbnail photo via Steve Mitchell/USA TODAY Sports Images