Antonio Brown is many things, but predictable is not one of them. After seemingly giving up any hopes of playing in the NFL again, Brown just did something unprecedented. He apologized to Robert Kraft and the New England Patriots.
After months of hard-headed denials and claims that everyone but himself was to blame for slandering his reputation, Brown’s U-turn is surprising at the very least.
Admissions of any guilt have been extremely rare, making the former wide receiver’s repentance to Kraft and his Patriots so unexpected. It was just a few days ago that Brown said “F**k the NFL” and appeared to be done with the league.
After meeting with the NFL for 8 hours last week, a recent video posted by Antonio Brown suggested that if he took on some guilt for his actions, he might receive a lesser sentence. If this is true, could Brown’s most recent tweet be the first act in a carefully coordinated charm offensive?
If so, it is long overdue after weeks of self-inflicted damage to his reputation, which had already been severely wounded by multiple sexual assault allegations.
From a tactical point of view, Antonio Brown’s apology to Robert Kraft comes at a very opportune time. The New England Patriots have looked uncharacteristically impotent over the last couple of games, with their much-vaunted defense creaking as Tom Brady’s offense fails to click.
A loss to the Baltimore Ravens showed the rest of the NFL the Pats could lose, while a miserable offensive performance against a fragile Philadelphia Eagles secondary has solidified that belief.
Does Kraft need Brown to win another Super Bowl? He would certainly help a lot, but it is still a fantasy to imagine that the former Steelers wide receiver could be cleared by the league and saunter back to Foxborough ready to compete in the playoffs.
Antonio Brown’s apology was also published on his Instagram page, and as usual, Tom Brady was there to like it. Resisting some of the political implications of continually affirming support for his former teammate, Brady has made it quite clear that he would sincerely love to get AB back in his No.17 jersey sometime soon.
Brown is obviously making a concerted effort to change the PR dialogue. However, Patriots fans should understand that a return to Robert Kraft’s organization remains a distant goal at this time.
The NFL is going to need a lot more than tweets to greenlight the once Hall of Fame-bound receiver’s return to the league.
Last modified: November 19, 2019 6:55 PM UTC