We’re about to find out if talent wins out over headaches. Troubled wide receiver Antonio Brown would love to make his way back into the NFL. He’s stayed in great shape, but he’s also stayed Antonio Brown. On the field, he’s clearly a top-three wide receiver in terms of pure talent. Off the field, he’s always finding trouble. The Baltimore Ravens, who were the No. 1 seed in the AFC playoffs a year ago, haven’t shut down rumors of signing the much-maligned Brown.
Antonio Brown’s success on the football field
It’s clear Antonio Brown has Hall-of-Fame football talent. He has proven to be a draft-day steal after the Pittsburgh Steelers selected him in the sixth round of the 2010 NFL draft. Brown played his college ball at Central Michigan before spending 10 seasons in the NFL.
Brown made the first of his seven Pro Bowls in his second season in the league. After playing sparingly in his rookie year, Brown came on strong in Year 2 with 1,108 receiving yards and a pair of touchdowns. He also played key roles on special teams as a punt/kick returner and returned a punt for a touchdown.
In the 2014 and the 2015 seasons, Brown led the league in receiving yardage. In 2014, he collected 1,698 yards to go along with 13 touchdowns. He followed that season with a career-high 1,834 yards and 10 scores. In his final season with the Steelers in 2018, he led the NFL with 15 touchdowns.
Brown’s fall from the NFL
As his time went on in Pittsburgh, Antonio Brown’s relationship grew worse with some of his teammates and he asked for a trade. Brown was traded to the Oakland Raiders and signed a deal that made him the highest player in the league. The only problem was he never played a down for the Raiders as his off-the-field antics got him released before the season began.
Brown was then signed to a deal by the New England Patriots. He lasted 11 days with the team. Brown played in one game for the Patriots when he had four catches for 56 yards and a touchdown. He was then released by the team as the NFL was investigating a sexual assault charge against him.
Since his release from the Patriots, Brown has been in the news for all the wrong reasons. He was involved in an altercation with his ex-girlfriend and then had some profanity-laced tirades against the police. Brown even streamed himself cursing at the police via Instagram. He also has had multiple social media posts lashing out at New England Patriots owner Robert Kraft and blasting the NFL.
What’s next for Antonio Brown?
There’s no doubt Antonio Brown would love to make his way back into the NFL. He’s still in great shape and has the talent to help out a number of teams. Would any team at this point take a chance on a guy who’s been released by two teams in the last year and has a history of flying off the handle?
The Baltimore Ravens have been rumored to have an interest in Brown. The Ravens are a team that one player could make a difference as they went 14-2 before faltering in the playoffs. Marquise ‘Hollywood’ Brown, the Ravens’ first-round draft pick in 2019, is Antonio Brown’s cousin. Could the two be teammates in 2020? Ravens GM Eric DeCosta was asked recently if the team had any interest in Antonio Brown. He didn’t say no.
We’re always assessing the players out there on the streets,” DeCosta said. “We’re looking at guys, we’re making decisions that we think are best for the clubs. If we think there’s a guy out there who fits us, who’s got the skill set to provide value, we’ll certainly pounce on that kind of guy. As Ozzie (Newsome) always used to tell me, we don’t play games until September. So, we’ve got a lot of time to build the best team we can build and we’ll continue to do that. I look at this time period right here after the draft as a great opportunity to get better as a football team and we will look to do that.”