ABout to Retire
Antonio Brown has quickly turned himself from one of the best receivers in the NFL, to a laughing stock on social media. Since his trade from Pittsburgh, this has been one of the wildest , most bizarre storylines fans have ever seen. After being traded to the Oakland Raiders in March, Brown has never played a single regular season down for the black and silver. A 6th round pick by the Steelers back in the 2010 NFL draft, his is a remarkable “from nothing to something”epic. Working behind big names like Emmanual Sanders and Hines Ward on the depth chart, he quickly made a name for himself with a breakout second year: 69 receptions for 1,108 yards and two touchdowns. After leaving the Steel City, Brown ignited comical controversies, from storming out of practice because he couldn’t wear his favorite helmet, to throwing a huge temper tantrum in front of general manager, Mike Mayock. This behavior leads fans to wonder… is it time to officialy call it a career for AB?
February 12, 2019 Brown penned his farewell letter to the Steelers fan base: “It’s time to move on.” NFL teams pursued this superstar receiver, blind to the further disruptions he’d create. The Oakland Raiders sent a 2019 3rd round and 5th round draft pick to Pittsburgh in return for Brown and quickly signed him to a 3-year, $50.13 million deal, retrofitted with a massive $30.13 million guaranteed bonus.
As Organized Team Activities or “OTA’s” came around the corner, Brown found himself in quite the dilemma. A new NFL policy would forbid him from wearing his beloved helmet, the Schutt Air Advantage, but Brown threatened to retire if he didn’t get his way. After filing 2 grievances (losing both), Brown finally found a suitable alternative that fits his specific criteria. Not only did he stir up some drama over a helmet, he also had severely frostbitten feet after a cryotherapy session, throwing social media into a frenzy.
“Hard Knocks,” a football reality show featured on HBO, aired a segment of Antonio Brown showing off his frostbitten feet. Weeks later, just as the Raiders prepared for Week one game against the Denver Broncos on Monday Night Football, Brown scuffled with his boss, general manager Mike Mayock. According to Adam Schefter of ESPN, Brown got up in Mayock’s face and said “Now fine me for that!” Well, Mayock answered his disgruntled receiver’s wishes after a video posted on Brown’s Youtube channel showed him illegally taping a phone conversation with Head Coach Jon Gruden. Mayock voided $29.125 million of his guarantees, fined him $200 thousand, and released the receiver a day before their Week One game.
Jasper Hodge, TL sophomore, felt shocked but understood when the Raiders released Brown. “He went from being my favorite player on the Raiders, to one of (my) most hated ever…He has possibly ruined their season”
The New England Patriots made a bold move and signed Antonio Brown to a one-year, $15 million dollar deal with $9 million guaranteed money. He didn’t play Week One when the Patriots blew out the Steelers 33-3 on Sunday Night Football but he was ready to suit up for week two, until just days after signing, Antonio Tavaris Brown Sr. was accused of two sexual assault and rape charges from two different women, and the NFL launched a full investigation. That didn’t stop Brown from suiting up in Week Two against the Miami Dolphins. In a shutout against the Miami Dolphins, he posted four receptions, 56 yards, and a touchdown–on the receiving end of the renowned Tom Brady. Days after the game, Nike dropped Brown after even more allegations of sexual misconduct spread.
The Antonio Brown controversy exploded on Instagram and Twitter, bashing the receiver childlike tantrums, and labeling him as a “clown,” a name Matteo Vernon, freshman lineman for the Trojans echoes: “I get he’s a great player but he doesn’t have to be so arrogant. Tom Brady, in my opinion, the best NFL player of all time, keeps his cool, and stays humble…unlike Brown. Others jokingly defend him, citing that CTE, or Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy, has taken full effect. CTE is a neurological disease caused by repeated trauma to the head and can result in dementia, behavioral problems, mood swings, and more. Trojans head coach Mr. Hartwell asserted “…he’s been disruptive for all his teammates. It’s really difficult to have a cohesive team when you have somebody that is so selfish.”
At the end of the day, Antonio Tavaris Brown Sr. has made a name for himself as one of the best receivers the NFL has ever seen. With fame comes haters. He has the right to live his life but unfortunately, he has garnered the attention of one of the most ruthless fanbases of all time. Sure his behavior may be questionable but he is human after all. What do you think of Antonio Brown? Is social media being too rough on him? Let me know your opinion!
Update: Antonio Brown has been released by the New England Patriots but has yet to formally anounce retirement at this point. He signed up for 4 online classes at Central Michigan and was mocked by the internet world for his horrendous grammar on a Twitter post asking for a proofreader.