Antonio Brown Timeline: From a Summer With the Raiders to 11 Days With the Patriots
Antonio Brown was released by the Patriots on Friday afternoon after multiple allegations of sexual misconduct, including accusations of assault and rape, were levied against him. The NFL is currently investigating the reports made against the wide receiver, who is now a free agent.
Brown's summer began in Oakland after being traded by Pittsburgh. After several issues with the Raiders, he was released and signed by New England. He played in one game for the Patriots amid the allegations against him before the team released him after just 11 days. New England's decision came after it was revealed that Brown had sent intimidating and threatening text messages to one of his accusers.
Here's an exact timeline of all events involving Brown up to this point:
March 10: The Steelers traded Brown to the Raiders in exchange for third- and fifth-round picks in the 2019 NFL draft.
August 7: Brown suffers extreme frostbite on his feet due to a cryotherapy chamber and is unable to practice with the team.
Into August: Brown skipped most of the Raiders' training camp in August in protest of the NFL's helmet policy. His Schutt Air Advantage was not re-certified by the NFL in 2018, which forced the four-time All-Pro to find a new helmet but it was reported that Brown would not play football if he was not allowed to continue wearing his old helmet. He then filed a grievance with the NFL and the process was filled with drama, as Brown even threatened to retire at one point due to the helmet issue.
August 12: The former Steelers' star briefly returned to Raiders' practice with after missing nearly two weeks, but his presence didn't last long.
August 18: Raiders general manager Mike Mayock publicly called for Brown to show up for work and issued a statement after Brown missed practice. Mayock said, "So from our perspective, it's time for him to be all in or all out."
August 20: Brown was given a one-year grace period to phase out the helmet he had been wearing his entire career after his first helmet grievance. He eventually returned to practice with an approved helmet on August 20 but then filed a second grievance regarding the grace period.
August 25: Brown lost his second helmet grievance in late August.
September 4: Brown settles on a helmet for the season, choosing the 'Xenith Shadow' and presumably putting the helmet saga to rest for the reason. The four-time All-Pro then posts a photo of his fines for missed practices on Instagram, which totaled nearly $54,000, and a notice from the team. The notice says that Brown was fined $13,950 for missing Oakland's walk-through on Aug. 22 and he was also previously fined $40,000 for missing training camp on Aug. 18.
Brown then approached Mayock at practice on Wednesday about the fines and reportedly called Mayock a "cracker" and unloaded several "cuss words" during the spat, allegations the wide receiver denied after the fact, saying the spat was "blown out of proportion."
The incident reportedly never got physical, although several players, including linebacker Vontaze Burfict, tried to pull Brown away and calm him down. The confrontation led to the Raiders reportedly planning to suspend Brown, which did not ultimately happen.
September 6: Brown returned to practice on Friday and head coach Jon Gruden said the "plan" was for him to play in Oakland's season opener vs. the Broncos on Monday Night Football. Gruden addressed reporters on Friday and said that he was happy to see Brown back after he missed Thursday's practice.
"Antonio's back today. We're really excited about that and ready to move on," Gruden said. "He's had a lot of time obviously to think about things and we're happy to have him back."
September 7: Brown asks for release from Raiders Saturday morning in an Instagram post after the team fined Brown $215,073.53 on Friday night for conduct detrimental to the team (from the incident which occurred on Sept. 4) and voided the $29.125 million worth of guaranteed money in his contract. The Raiders released Brown within hours of his post. Brown agrees to join the Patriots following his release from Oakland. He will earn $15 million over the course of his one-year deal.
September 9: Brown signs with New England. The team adds a $20 million option onto his contract for the 2020 season.
September 10: Britney Taylor, Brown's former trainer, accuses the Patriots wide receiver of sexual assault and rape in a civil lawsuit. It was reported Brown had previously turned down a settlement that would have involved him paying the alleged victim, Taylor, $2 million.
September 11: Brown practices with the Patriots despite the rape allegations and ongoing lawsuit.
September 13: Reports surface that New England was not aware of the impending lawsuit against Brown or accusations of assault when they signed him. Helmet manufacturer Xenith ends endorsement deal with Brown amid the allegations.
September 15: Brown makes his debut with the Patriots in Week 2 after the league decided not to put him on the commissioner's exempt list. Brown made four catches for 54 yards and one touchdown before avoiding reporters after the game.
September 16: Taylor meets with NFL investigators for 10 hours. Sports Illustrated releases a story in which a second allegation of sexual misconduct against Brown is made. Other behavioral issues are also brought to light.
September 18: The Allegheny County District Attorney's office and police department contact Brown's accuser, Taylor, regarding the allegations she made against him.
September 19: Brown addresses the media for the first time since the allegations were made against him and avoids commenting on the NFL's investigation into the accusations. Nike drops Brown as one of the brand's sponsored athletes.
September 20: In the early hours of Friday morning, Sports Illustrated publishes a follow-up which reveals that Brown had sent threatening and intimidating text messages to his second accuser after her story was made public. Photos of the accuser's children were included in the messages. Patriots coach Bill Belichick storms out of a press conference later that day over questions about Brown. New England releases Brown that afternoon.
Editor’s note: This post has been updated to correct the nature of the allegation in the Sept. 16 SI story.