Brown shared an alleged text message from the Bucs quarterback in May 2021 via social media on Monday, November 14. Brady’s message expressed concern about Brown’s off-field issues, and that message came well before Brown’s abrupt exit from the team in January 2022. Despite prior off-field issues, Brown joined the Bucs at Brady’s request in 2020, and they helped lead the Bucs to a Super Bowl win.
“You are demonstrating very poor decisions and poor communication to so many people who have gone above and beyond to help you,” Brady wrote, based on the screenshot. “You are acting selfish and unfortunately many of those people are exhausted by the erratic and unpredictable emotional behavior.”
At that point in time, Brown faced an assortment of off-field issues and had yet to re-sign with the Bucs for the 2021 season. Brown’s issues that led to his exit surfaced with little public warning, but Brown then claimed the Bucs mishandled his ankle injury.
“So is Antonio Brown attempting to make Tom Brady look like the bad guy here? Because he comes across as a damn good friend here,” wrote “Toucher and Rich” on Twitter with Brown’s Snapchat screenshot.
Brady Built Up Brown & Called Him Out
Brady continued his text, per the screen shot, with affirmations of the things Brown did right on and off the field before 2021.
“When I met you, you were humble, willing to learn and anxious to improve things in your life,” Brady continued. “In a short period of time, you have done those things and accomplished some great things. And very much on the path to success long term. Unfortunately, you have reverted very much back to a young immature man that is selfish, self serving, irrational and irresponsible.”
“I for one, am disappointed in many behaviors over the past few months,” Brady added. “You have seemed to have lost that humility and that APG. You have gone from hanging around good quality people that had genuine interest in seeing you succeed, to seeing others whose lives are erratic and out of control and leading you down a negative path.”
Brady Expressed Concern & Support for Brown After Quitting Bucs
Upon Brown jumping ship from Tampa Bay, Brady expressed his support and concern for Brown as a person during the “Let’s Go!” podcast in January. On the field, Brady and the Bucs moved on with the additions of Julio Jones and Russell Gage to the receiving corps, but the Bucs have missed Brown’s speed and deep ball threat this season.
“I’ve known Antonio for a couple years now, pretty closely,” Brady told podcast host Jim Gray in January. “We’ve obviously been teammates and I would just say I love him, I care about him and I have a lot of compassion and a lot of empathy for the things that are happening in his life.”
Brown, 34, hasn’t returned to the NFL since his exit though he expressed interest in the Dallas Cowboys and joked about joining the Cleveland Browns. His career looked like one of a Hall of Famer on paper with 928 receptions, 12,291 yards, and 83 touchdowns. He also made four All-Pro teams and seven Pro Bowls.
Since quitting football, Brown has been occupied with various off-field ventures.