It’s been a rough journey back to the NFL for star wide receiver Antonio Brown. He has gone through various off-the-field legal issues that have pushed him out of the league. There has been recent progress made toward stabilizing his situation with a set suspension handed down. Despite that, Brown’s hopes to play in the NFL just took another significant hit.
Antonio Brown continues to work toward an NFL return
It has been a bumpy road to a return to the NFL for star wide receiver Antonio Brown over nearly the last year.
Brown has struggled to get another opportunity due to his various concerning off-the-field issues linked to legal troubles. These problems alone have kept him out of a job, especially with the expectation that a lengthy suspension from the league would hit him.
It took several months, but Brown received an eight-game suspension to begin the 2020 season for violating the league’s personal-conduct policy. However, what still hovers around is the possibility of that punishment becoming extended, depending on how the civil case involving sexual misconduct unravels. Through it all, Brown has voiced a roller coaster of emotions concerning his desire to play in the NFL.
In the last few weeks, the 32-year-old has continued to err toward wanting to get another chance to prove himself in the league. That said, his potential return just took a discouraging hit on Thursday morning.
Seahawks elect to sign Josh Gordon
Throughout the last several months, the Seattle Seahawks have remained heavily linked to Antonio Brown.
The Seahawks have monitored the situation that included conducting a thorough background check on the star wideout. However, the possibility of bringing him aboard just took a massive hit after the franchise elected to re-sign Josh Gordon, according to Ian Rapoport of The NFL Network.
As Rapoport noted, Gordon is still awaiting reinstatement from the NFL, but the move suggests that should come soon. He has been serving an indefinite suspension due to violating the league’s substance-abuse policy. A dramatic shift in that aspect occurred back in March that involves removing bans based solely on positive drug tests for non-PEDs.
The move to add Gordon doesn’t officially take the Seahawks out of the picture for Brown. It’s likely they considered all the parameters around the pending situation then decided to go with Gordon. Seattle has familiarity with the former Pro Bowl, who played much of the 2019 season with the franchise before his suspension.
Brown did have an internal push from star quarterback Russell Wilson, who previously vouched for signing him before Gordon inked a deal last season. It now shifts things to other potential options.
More options should come forward
There is no way around it as the Seahawks signing Josh Gordon is a significant blow to Antonio Brown’s NFL return.
Seattle stayed in the picture as the team that would bring him back to the league. Instead, Brown’s focus must shift to other potential landing spots. The Baltimore Ravens were linked to him due to his connection with the reigning league MVP Lamar Jackson.
There is a lack of a push on that front even after Jackson publicly voiced his desire to play with Brown. The team also recently brought in former Pro Bowler Dez Bryant for a workout, but nothing has come to fruition concerning a deal. There could likely be other teams waiting in the wings to see what happens with his civil case before proceeding forward.
Ultimately, only time will tell if Brown will get another chance to play in the NFL.