The door for a potential reunion between Antonio Brown and the Patriots reportedly remains ajar, albeit slightly.
New England players and coaches “want” the team to re-sign the embattled wideout, CBS Sports’ Jason La Canfora reported Sunday, citing sources. Brown, of course, was released in September amid a series of off-field issues.
There are two significant factors preventing a reunion, however. Patriots owner Robert Kraft, whom Brown scorned on his way out of town, reportedly remains cold on the idea of bringing back the 31-year-old. Additionally, the NFL has yet to determine potential discipline after its investigation into allegations of sexual assault — among other things — brought against Brown.
From La Canfora’s column published Sunday:
“Former Patriots receiver Antonio Brown continues to train in hopes of a return this season, while the NFL determines any discipline from accusations of sexual assault made against him in a civil lawsuit. New England players and coaches would welcome him back, sources said.
“Owner Robert Kraft, who released Brown after playing one game with the team, is the deciding factor, and has not shown an inclination to give the receiver another shot after his repeated missteps on social media in the aftermath of his release by the Patriots months ago. However, if Kraft were to reconsider, sources said Brown’s teammates and coaches would support bringing him back, with Brown’s chemistry with Tom Brady obvious from his initial practice with the team and Brown getting along well with all parties during his brief stint there.”
Brown recently apologized to Robert Kraft, though it’s unclear how the message was received by Patriots brass. The star receiver has been an enigma on social media since his release, with the few seemingly genuine posts often overshadowed by those that range from bizarre to downright problematic.
Regardless, there appears to be at least a slim possibility of Brown returning to the Patriots. And, from a purely football perspective, New England really could use him.