Analysis: The Antonio Brown Saga


Dan Piersma, Staff Writer

The Pittsburgh Steelers, Oakland Raiders and New England Patriots are three NFL teams
that all have something in common over the last year; they have been involved in the Antonio
Brown saga that seems to be never ending.
In March, after nine years with the Steelers, Brown became a problem in the locker room
and he wanted out. He was dealt to the Oakland Raiders where he signed a three-year $30
million guaranteed extension. From that point on, things only got worse for the controversial pro-
bowl wide receiver, making some people wonder if he ever even wanted to play for Oakland.
Senior Haydn Demers-St. Hilaire said he believes that Brown’s entire time in Oakland
was just part of a plan to get to his current team, the New England Patriots.
“Ever since the Patriots tried to trade for Brown in March, I think he’s had his mind set
on playing for them,” Demers-St. Hilaire said. “Doing whatever it takes to get released for
Oakland so that he can sign with New England and increase his chances of winning a Super
From suffering extreme frostbite in a cryogenic therapy chamber to almost getting into a
fight with the Raiders general manager, Brown’s time in Oakland up to his release could be
described as tumultuous.
“When he released the video of his saying how ‘God is Great,’ which came out once he
was released from Oakland, just shows that he never wanted to play for that team.” Demers-St.
Hilaire said.
This has been such a bad look for the NFL since it began because Brown has been a top
receiver his entire career, as he’s been selected to the pro bowl in seven of his nine seasons so far
and who knows what will happen in this season.
Brown lost a grievance about the type of helmet he was supposed to wear on Aug. 12 and
on Sept. 4 was fined $54,000 for missing practices. The next day it was revealed that Brown and
the Raiders GM almost got into a fight. By Sept. 7 he was released from the team and within
hours signed with the Patriots.
Senior Griffin Baur believes that this whole situation has set a very bad precedent around
the league and could cause future issues.
“This could cause a problem for other great players who want to get out of a bad situation
on a struggling team. Especially since he ended up on the Patriots who once again look poised to
make a run at the Super Bowl,” he said. “Hopefully this isn’t the case because that would hurt
the sport immensely.”
The entire situation in Oakland also shows how much worse the situation was when
Brown was in Pittsburgh.

“It shows that Mike Tomlin, Steelers head coach, had a much more volatile situation in
the locker room than outsiders realized,” Baur said.
Another angle that needs to be looked at in this entire situation is the fact the Raiders
were featured on the hit HBO show ‘Hard Knocks.’ It gave way to most of these instances
because ‘Hard Knocks’ stays with the team throughout the entirety of the NFL’s preseason.
Senior Zack Hillel said he isn’t buying into a lot of this situation being real.
“I feel like the whole helmet stuff was staged because it was his way to get out of
Oakland, AB got his news out because of ‘Hard Knocks’ so there was no way to avoid everyone
seeing all of the drama,” Hillel said.
The saga does not end there. Brown is now being accused of sexual assault by a former
trainer who said she was the victim of several instances of sexual assault by Brown, according to
Sports Illustrated.
“I feel like it happens to a lot of NFL players and stuff and when it comes out it’s always
at the person’s low time.” Hillel said.
Brown had four receptions for 56 yards and a touchdown in his first game with New
England last Sunday. It will be interesting to see how the accusation against him is handled and
how he plays the rest of the season.