Over the past year, it seems like Antonio Brown has done everything except play football. Whether it was requesting a trade from Pittsburgh and calling out old teammates, refusing to practice because the NFL wouldn’t let him use his old helmet, or asking for a release via social media from a team he hadn’t played a game for yet, Brown was always in the news for the wrong reasons. Seriously, if you follow the NFL at all, it seemed like once a week there was a wacky new story about him coming out, or a twitter rant from the man himself. With everything that went on this past year, it’s easy to forget that he actually did play a game this season for the New England Patriots, in which he caught four balls for 54 yards and a touchdown. Now, that seems like forever ago, and many believe it to be the last we’ll see of him on an NFL field. Watch the whole timeline of events from last September below.
At first, people believed that he just wanted out of Pittsburgh. We figured that he was done with the organization and saw that it was probably going in another direction anyways. Then, he got off to a rocky start in Oakland. Although this raised some eyebrows, it wasn’t until he was being continuously fined for missing mandatory meetings and walkthroughs that people were really getting concerned. Just days after he lost his privilege to guaranteed money, he requested a release from the team on an instagram story. Although he was picked up by the Patriots just days later, that relationship only got him one game with the team, and he hasn’t played since. More recently, it’s gotten worse for Brown, as he was arrested for a slew of charges including felony burglary.
Fast forward to last week, where ESPN released an interview with Brown. In it, the former all-pro expressed regret for his actions, and said that he owes the NFL an apology. He also said that he thought he could have “handled many things a lot better”. The problem though, is that the damage may already be done. Even with an apology now, it could very well become a case of too little, too late. It seems that even if Brown continues to try and prove that he can be a reliable professional again, no general manager will want to take the risk. It really is a shame that a potential Hall of Fame career could end in this way. As much as you’d love to see a comeback story, the main hope here is that Brown can get his mind clear again and get himself back on track, and maybe one day, we can see him suiting up on Sundays once more. As for his career, I don’t think one sit down interview and apology with ESPN is nearly enough for him to get another job, but it’s undoubtedly a step in the right direction.