Fans of the Oakland Raiders can breathe a sigh of relief regarding the Antonio Brown situation. According to the team’s official Twitter page, they have made the decision to release him from his contract.
This comes just a few hours after Brown requested his release on Instagram. This is all a shocking turn of events considering Jon Gruden said that they planned to play Brown less than 24-hours ago. With a game on the horizon, the Raiders can finally put this drama behind them and focus on the Denver Broncos.
Make no mistake, this is a massive blow to the Raider offense, but they are going to have to manage. Tyrell Williams will likely be the team’s number one receiver going forward, but it’s possible Oakland tries to add another piece. This whole Antonio Brwon saga has been a disaster for the Raiders. It started off just fine but got progressively worse with each passing week. First, there was the frostbite, then it was the helmet and lastly, it was his confrontation with general manager Mike Mayock. NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport has given some supplementary information.
“An explanation for why #Raiders WR Antonio Brown was so upset, from AB to me: ‘Told me do not come in Thursday. Bad my name. Then come work, give two papers after the press conference. No guaranteed no way,” tweeted Rapoport.
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Where Do the Raiders Go From Here?
Mike Mayock and Jon Gruden are going to get a lot of flack for how this whole thing turned out, but they did the best they could. When arguably the best wide receiver in the NFL is available for a third and fifth-round draft pick, you got to take that deal. This whole thing lands on Antonio Brown’s shoulders. There’s no doubt that he’ll hop on social media and try to justify his behavior, but this is the second time in less than a year that he’s forced his way off of a team.
The Raiders will have to make do with losing their best player just before the season started. Luckily, they spent most of training camp without him, so they have a good idea of how things will work. It’s up to Derek Carr, Josh Jacobs and Tyrell Williams to lead this offense going forward.
Drew Rosenhaus Responds
Perhaps the person who has had the hardest job through all of this is Brown’s agent, Drew Rosenhaus. He issued a brief response to the release.
“Now that Antonio is a free agent, we are focused on the future and I will immediately work on signing him to a new team,” said Rosenhaus via Adam Schefter on Twitter. “Antonio is looking forward to a new beginning.”
After his recent display in Oakland, Antonio Brown will have a very hard time getting the same money the Raiders paid him. There will probably be some team willing to take a shot on him, but it’s going to have to be one with really strong infrastructure.