Antonio Brown to Tampa Bay Buccaneers: ‘A fascinating gamble’

Antonio Brown last played in the NFL in September 2019, turning out in one game for the Patriots

Antonio Brown returns to the NFL, taking to the field for the first time in 14 months as he makes his Tampa Bay Buccaneers debut on Sunday night against the New Orleans Saints.

Brown, a four-time All-Pro receiver and seven-time Pro Bowler during nine seasons with the Pittsburgh Steelers, was suspended by the league for eight games without pay in July for multiple violations of the league’s personal conduct policy.

The NFL continues to investigate a lawsuit filed by Brown’s former athletic trainer against him, alleging that she was sexually assaulted by Brown. He has denied the allegations, with the case set to go to trial in December.

But with his league suspension now served, Brown has been given a chance by the Buccaneers, where he teams up with six-time Super Bowl-winner Tom Brady – a team-mate of Brown’s briefly last year with the New England Patriots.

Antonio Brown to Tampa Bay Buccaneers: 'A fascinating gamble'

Antonio Brown to Tampa Bay Buccaneers: 'A fascinating gamble' 3:50
The Good Morning Football crew look at the contrasting fortunes of Tom Brady and Cam Newton with the Buccaneers and Patriots

The Good Morning Football crew look at the contrasting fortunes of Tom Brady and Cam Newton with the Buccaneers and Patriots

Discussing Brown’s return to the league, joining an already loaded Tampa Bay team who are 6-2 on the season, Good Morning Football‘s Peter Schrager labelled the move as “fascinating” but believes one false move will see him swiftly discarded by the team.

“This is a major deal,” said Schrager. “We can talk about whether that was the right move, whether the Bucs were making a statement bringing him on.

“Brady is going to make a point to make this work. This is not going to fail – Brady is going to make sure Brown is a factor in this game [against the Saints].

Antonio Brown to Tampa Bay Buccaneers: 'A fascinating gamble'

Antonio Brown to Tampa Bay Buccaneers: 'A fascinating gamble' 1:17
NFL Network analytics expert Cynthia Frelund gives her Week Nine NFL predictions

NFL Network analytics expert Cynthia Frelund gives her Week Nine NFL predictions

“This is fascinating to me; it’s his fourth team in 20 months, he missed out on so many millions of dollars based on his antics and his behaviour on and off the field in recent years.

“He seems humble, he seems aware and, based on what I’m hearing out of Tampa, he’s in the best shape they could possibly imagine.

“This is Antonio Brown, joining an offence that is already clicking on all cylinders.

“If he acts up though, if he gets out of line, if he does something that is going to embarrass himself or the team, they will cut him and they will move right along.

“I want to think he is all in, but of course he has a court case in December he’s got to think about as well. But, for this weekend, I think he’s going to make an impact and I think the Buccaneers are going to be a dangerous team to play with AB on the roster.”

Antonio Brown to Tampa Bay Buccaneers: 'A fascinating gamble'

Antonio Brown to Tampa Bay Buccaneers: 'A fascinating gamble' 5:52
Highlights of the Buccaneers at the Giants from Week Eight of the NFL season

Highlights of the Buccaneers at the Giants from Week Eight of the NFL season

Brown, himself, spoke to reporters for the first time since signing with the Bucs on Wednesday, where he spoke of his gratitude to the team for taking a chance of him, while he also said how his time away from the game has made him a better person.

“I’m extremely grateful to be here with such a great organisation, to be around some great players,” Brown said. “First and foremost, being away from the game a year and a half, just to be able to be a part of the process and be out there with the guys today was surreal.

“It’s something I don’t take it for granted, something I have a great appreciation for, a better perspective about, and a lot of gratification to do what I love. It’s a blessing.

“I took a lot of time off from the game to re-evaluate myself, to look within, to get a better perspective of myself and, being in this position, we followed the mission and getting back on track is what I’m here to do.”

Antonio Brown to Tampa Bay Buccaneers: 'A fascinating gamble'

Antonio Brown to Tampa Bay Buccaneers: 'A fascinating gamble' 3:56
A look back at the action and talking points from Week Eight of the NFL season

A look back at the action and talking points from Week Eight of the NFL season

When asked about those who are questioning whether he deserves to be back in the NFL, Brown added: “Hopefully I can change their perspectives. Being here around great people, a great organisation, hopefully I can win them over with my actions of how I move forward and how I handle my business.”

Weighing in with his thoughts on Brown’s move, and his comments, Good Morning Football’s Kyle Brandt said he has no doubt that Brown can have an impact on the field but questions whether he has truly corrected his behaviour off of it, citing his disastrous stint with the Raiders last year.

After signing with the Raiders in March 2019, Antonio Brown never played in a regular season game before being released

After signing with the Raiders in March 2019, Antonio Brown never played in a regular season game before being released

After a protracted fallout between Brown and the Steelers, he was traded to the Raiders in March 2019 but was released before playing a game following an altercation with general manager Mike Mayock.

“I think he’ll have a great debut – I believe in him as a player – but let’s see if he lasts six, seven, eight weeks,” Brandt said.

“Even with all the time off, I think he’s in the top 20 players in the league. It would not surprise me if he has a touchdown and 80 or 90 yards in this game if they put him on the field – I think he’s that good.

“Say what you want about the guy – and I’ve said plenty – he is so good. If he is out there, I think he’ll be the difference.

Antonio Brown to Tampa Bay Buccaneers: 'A fascinating gamble'

Antonio Brown to Tampa Bay Buccaneers: 'A fascinating gamble' 3:54
Brian Baldinger joins Hannah Wilkes and Josh Denzel on NFL Overtime to pick out their favourite plays from the 2020 NFL season at the halfway point

Brian Baldinger joins Hannah Wilkes and Josh Denzel on NFL Overtime to pick out their favourite plays from the 2020 NFL season at the halfway point

“But it’s the long-term with him. Do it again, do it over weeks and weeks. I am not moved by the press conference, I am not taken aback by his softness, his sensitivity, his awareness, because I don’t have a short memory.

“March 13, 2019; do you remember his introductory press conference for the Raiders? I went and looked at it and this is the kind of stuff he was saying that day: ‘I bring accountability to this team, I bring actions, it’s not what I say, it’s what I do’.

“Maybe five minutes later, he was screaming at the coach, trying to punch the GM.

“It was a complete, unmitigated disaster in which he embarrassed himself, completely insulted and disrespected the Raiders and the league.

“Great football player, but we’ll see if this last more than five seconds like it did last time.”

“For Tampa Bay, it’s the equivalent of a poker player going all in. It’s a major gamble but, if it pays off, they can beat anybody in the entire NFL.”

Watch the New Orleans Saints @ Tampa Bay Buccaneers live on Sky Sports NFL from 1:20am in the early hours of Monday morning. It’s part of a Sunday night triple-header of NFL action, with coverage starting at 5pm.


Checkout latest world news below links :
World News || Latest News || U.S. News

Help us to become independent in PANDEMIC COVID-19. Contribute to diligent Authors.

[charitable_donation_form campaign_id=57167]

Source link

Back to top button
SoundCloud To Mp3