Professional football player Antonio Brown has recently made headlines for destroying his possible Hall of Fame career in a total of four months. After being traded to the Oakland Raiders, Brown developed extreme frostbite on his feet, from a cryotherapy session gone wrong, and did not wear the proper footwear while going through the procedure. Frostbite prevented Brown from attending multiple Raider’s practices.
In early August, Brown started controversy after not being able wearing the same helmet he wore for the past eight years of his career, which did not meet the National Football League approved list of helmets because it is extremely outdated. Because of this, Brown decided to hold out of the Raiders training camp until the National Football League (NFL) granted his wish and allows him to wear the helmet he has worn for years, the appeal was rejected. The Raiders, obviously blindsided by his peculiar behavior regarding his helmet, decided to fine Brown $215,000 for not showing up to training camp.
On Sept. 6, instead of accepting the fact that he was fined for holding out — which is normal procedure for players — he furthered the controversy even more. Brown’s outburst consisted of him punting a football, confronting general manager, Mike Mayock, in a threatening manner, as well as calling him a “cracker.” It is incredible that a player can say these things and still remain on the team.
Brown’s antics were so extreme that he would almost certainly been released if he was not considered one of the best Wide Receivers in the NFL. Because of his heroics on the football field, the Raiders decided to suspend Brown instead of releasing him. Then, Brown came up with a heartfelt apology in front of the entire Raiders organization. It seemed, at that point, that Brown learned his lesson about making crazy statements and acting unprofessionally; that was not the case. Brown proceeded to post an Instagram photo with a caption that stated he was done with the Raiders organization and wished for them to release him.
His wish was granted on Sept. 7, when he lost 29 million dollars and the Raiders voided his termination pay, releasing him. Almost immediately after, the New England Patriots signed Brown to a $15 million contract. Brown ended up playing one game for the Patriots until he was accused by two women of sexual harassment and rape. The TMZ report is too graphic to share in full detail, but it was very troubling, to say the least.
The Patriots still held on to Brown – until he sent the accuser threatening messages and the screenshots which became public. That was the final straw, Brown was subsequently released by the Patriots. The Patriots waited too long before releasing Brown, but eventually made the correct move. Brown is too risky to keep at this point. After being released by the Patriots, Brown made a total of only $158,000 despite signing two contracts for a total of $34 million.
Amazingly, these were not the only scandals Brown was involved in. According to a lawsuit against Brown, he was accused of passing gas multiple times in his doctor’s face and never paid that doctor for his services.
According to TMZ, Brown also is accused of trashing a hotel condo and throwing furniture down multiple stories–almost striking a child. Four or five scandals regarding Brown’s behavior were all released in a matter of a few months. Brown went from a humble NFL superstar and a possible Hall of Famer to a jobless train wreck.
One possible reason for Brown’s erratic behavior could be chronic traumatic encephalopathy. “He’s taken a lot of hits over the years at wideout; is it possible he’s starting to manifest some of the signs of CTE at this point in his career?,” questioned sports journalist Clay Travis. This is the brain condition that many NFL players have, due to repeated hits and trauma to the head. In fact, a study was conducted from Boston University that found CTE was present in 110 out of 111 deceased NFL football players’ brains.
In addition, Brown suffered a massive concussion from an infamously dirty hit from rival Vontaze Burfict in 2016. Brown has never shown any signs of deviant behavior, and was often regarded as a humble wide receiver and a good teammate – that changed recently. Football has been proven to cause major brain injury. Thus, the massive blow Brown took from Burfict, along with many other hits, may have caused Brown to develop CTE. One of the main symptoms of CTE is irrational thinking, which is the most logical explanation for Brown’s irrational behavior.