It’s unknown the exact reasoning the Patriots parted with Brown, but it comes after a string of text messages were released. The timing also may have also cost him some money as well due to contract structure.
On Sunday morning, Antonio Brown took to Twitter and unleashed a string of tweets, one of which included a statement that he is done playing in the NFL. In that initial message, he states frustration with the fact that teams can void contract guarantees The tweet implied that he is unlikely to receive the $9 million payday he was due in a signing bonus from the Patriots.
With a more in-depth look at the situation, NFL Network’s Tom Pelissero explains that the tweet likely means Brown will not receive his guaranteed $9 million from the Patriots or the remaining $1 million of base salary.
Brown, who is still entrenched in civil lawsuits involving allegations of sexual misconduct, was a perennial 1,000-yard receiver and Pro Bowler with the Steelers before he was traded to Oakland in the offseason.
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Burning Bridges With Patriots, Ben Roethlisberger
On his way out the door, Brown also took a shot at Patriots owner Robert Kraft. Aside from pressuring the Patriots owner to pay up, he brought up the 25-year owner’s own personal troubles away from football.
During the offseason, Kraft was involved in charges stemming from the Orchids of Asia Day Spa in Florida where he was accused of soliciting sexual acts.
Brown still remembers this incident and voiced his opinion of how he believes the current allegations and Kraft’s were handled differently.
Brown thanked Tom Brady and Bill Belichick on Instagram and Twitter following his release, but it appears there was not much of an affinity for the Patriots owner. There were even a few coaches in the Patriots organization that wanted to continue working with Brown.
The former Patriots wideout also went on to post a photo of a news headline from when Pittsburgh Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger was investigated for sexual assault.
In his short time with the Patriots, Brown made an impression on teammates who all openly praised his football ability. It was clear Brown was also picking up the offense quickly as he was instantly involved during his first and only game with the team.
Brown also called out the NFLPA, which has already gone to bat for the receiver over his helmet dispute and is prepared to do again, as Pelissero reported.
Antonio Brown Headed to the Commissioner’s Exempt List?
There’s still a chance Brown could find himself on the commissioner’s exempt list following the league’s investigation into his off-field allegations. The NFL met with his first accuser, Brown’s former trainer Britney Taylor, last Monday and were reportedly meeting with his second accuser on Friday, which was revealed around the time Brown was cut by New England.
If Brown were to head to the commissioner’s exempt list, he would be unable to play until removed from it. This would be a similar situation from a football standpoint to the one Kareem Hunt endured last season following domestic violence accusations.