“NFL Drama & Divas”
As soap operas go, this was a pretty good one….and I don’t think it’s over either.
Antonio Brown is now a New England Patriot, till he wears out his welcome, butts head with Bill Belicheck, and loses this job too.
The drama that has enveloped the Raiders for the last 30-days is over, but the damage to the franchise is not.
In the end, you could say newly minted GM-Mike Mayock showed everyone who was boss, but he likely wrecked his teams potential turn-around season.
The Raiders now longer have the superstar WR who was going to change everything. The moved to dump Brown cost them a 1-million signing bonus. They could face a grievance over the decision to terminate the 30M-in guarantees he had on the first two years of his contract, so there could be more fallout.
Equally as bad, they traded a 3rd and a 5th round pick to the Steelers to get the chance to bring Brown to the Black Hole, so this counts in the loss column too.
I figured the Patriots and the Bengals would make a run at the troubled wide receiver. Bill Belicheck has that history. And Mike Brown is willing to take on all types of riff-raff for his troubled team in Cincinnati.
There is history here in New England with the Patriots leadership. They took on troubled RB-Corey Dillon, who promptly gave them a (1,600Y) rushing season in a Super Bowl Year. They added on the ex Viking Randy Moss, in what turned out to be a (98-reception) run to the Super Bowl. They were gone within a couple of years after that.
The Patriots other wide receiver is the drug-alcohol troubled Josh Gordon, the ex Brown, coming off a 5th NFL suspension. He’s played 51-games in his career, suspended for 56. Most everyone thinks this ‘second chance’ in New England, will be his last chance anywhere.
New England has a history of taking on players from other teams and having success despite guys having 100,000 miles on the tread. Guys like Rodney Harrison and Junior Sean flourished in their post Chargers careers under Belicheck.
Rob Ninkovich was a street free agent, having been with 5-teams, then became a reliable star in Foxboro. They have successful runs with people like Mike Vrabel and Antwain Smith, whom they took off the scrap heap. So they know players.
But there have been failures too up there, CB-Shawn Springs..WR-Joey Galloway..LB-Chad Brown..LB-Adalius Thomas..DT-Albert Haynesworth. Some were older players who could not longer play, some couldn’t fit in, some were bums.
As for Antonio Brown, who destroyed his relationships at the end of the Steelers season last fall, there are questions in neon lights that have to be answered.
What is his ‘mental health state’. He wanted to go to Oakland. He wanted to play for Jon Gruden. HIs agent Drew Rosenhaus got him a big payday, and then Brown went off the track emotionally for the better part of a month.
If there were ever a reason for ’cause testing of a troubled player, you’d think New England would need answers to those questions before they forked over a potential 1Y-15M contract to a man with talent and baggage.
I wonder if past concussions have now taken over in his mental health.
For those of you keeping score at home, this is what AB did to the Silver & Black, that got him kicked out of the Black Hole.
..Went to France, outside the circle of Raiders doctors, for cryotherapy treatment resulting in frostbite to his feet.
..Knew in April the NFL was banning an old style helmet he wore for 9-years in Pittsburgh, then spent weeks fighting the league office, losing 2-grievances in the process.
..Missed 12-of-13 workouts in camp in Napa with his off-field issues, then practiced 3-times, but never played in a preseason game.
..Was fined 54,000-for no-shows at workouts, walk-thrus and team meetings.
..Stalked and confronted GM-Mike Mayock on the field during practice, racially slurred him, cursed him out infront of the team, and threatened to punch him in the face.
..Went on social media, calling his GM the ‘devil’ and a ‘hater’
..Emotionally apologized to his team in the lockeroom and said he was ready to play.
..Went back on social media and released a taped phone call he had with Coach Jon Gruden, his enabler, who asked ‘Do You Want to be a Raider’….told Brown to ‘stop this s–t and just play’….Said he was not a villain but just misunderstood.
..Was fined an additional 215,000 by the GM for the on-field confrontation and informed via letter his 30-M-guarantees in the contract were voided by his insubordnation.
..Jumped back on social media with hashtags…’No guarantees-No play’…..’No More’…..’Release Me’.
..Was then released by the Raiders before the opening day rosters became final that would have guaranteed his 14.6M contract for the season.
..Signed 3-hours later in New England.
Of course now, the agent is saying how Brown wants to ‘fit in’…will be ‘all effort’…and wants to get what he’s never had a ‘Super Bowl Ring’.
What normal person would do these things?
His signing might put the Patriots back in the Super Bowl again. It may blow up in their face. It surely has destroyed the potential of the Raiders last season in Oakland.
Pick any word you want to described what we have just witnessed. Bizarre. Dramatic. Surreal. Circus.
I’ll choose another one. Dangerous.
I think there is something terribly emotionally wrong with this superstar. Players can wake up with traumatic brain damage one morning. The physical-emotional toll on his flamboyant wide receiver career may be taking over his life.
This comes within a week of star QB-Andrew Luck leaving the Colts because of chronic pain from 8-injuries suffered in 4-years of Sunday combat. And weeks after former Baltimore-Chargers fullback LeRon McClain pleads with the NFL to help with him get treatment for severe mental health issues and likely damage from his playing days.
I wonder if anyone in the NFL sees a ‘red flag’ here, or doesn’t care because the ‘green flag’ has been dropped on the 2019-NFL season.
Antonio Brown, a New England Patriot. We’ll wait to see his next touchdown catch, or next off field incident.
Am I the only one who thinks this may end badly, not just for the player, but the person?