Antonio Brown has peaced out.
Midway through the third quarter of the Jets game against the Buccaneers, the receiver decided he was done being on the field at MetLife Stadium.
The Bucs were down 24-10 and the Jets offense started its next drive on third-and-seven, when Brown seemed to snap.
The seven-time Pro Bowler wasn’t even on the field. He was on the sideline.
It’s unclear what specifically caused Brown’s outburst, but as normal as the Bucs sideline seemed, there was Brown suddenly pulling off his jersey and his pads.
Fellow receiver Mike Evans saw what Brown was starting to do and went over to talk to him, seemingly trying to tug his jersey back on. But there was no talking Brown out of his decision.
After he tossed his jersey and pads to the side, Brown proceeded to make his way back down the sideline to the tunnel, tossing off his undershirt and gloves into the stands on the way.
As he reached the opposite endzone from where the game was carrying on, he jumped and waved at fans, threw up a peace sign, gave some high-fives and exited the field.
After the game, Bucs head coach Bruce Arians said the obvious: the mercurial wideout was no longer on the team.
“He is no longer a Buc,” Arians said. “All right? That’s the end of the story. Let’s talk about the guys who went out there and won the game.”
“I’m not talking about it,” he added. “He’s not part of the Bucs.”
Brown was suspended earlier this season for using a fake COVID vaccine card and has had a number of off-field issues.
Bucs quarterback Tom Brady, who had taken Brown under his wing when both joined the team in 2020, was more forthright than his coach.
“It’s a difficult situation,” Brady said. “Everybody should do what they can to help him in ways that he really needs it. We all love him. We care about him deeply. We want to see him be at his best. Unfortunately, it won’t be with our team. … I think everyone should be very compassionate and empathetic toward some very difficult things that are happening.”
Le’Veon Bell, who joined the Bucs mid-season, defended his fellow former Steeler, who he said he had been happy to reunite with.
“He’s still one of my close friends,” Bell said. “Like you won’t hear me talking bad about AB at all. Obviously I understand things happen, but he’s one of my closest friends that I’ve been around. Close teammate, overall good person. Obviously, some bad decision-making sometimes but you know, he’s human. He’s not perfect.”
“At the end of the day, I wish the best for him outside of football or wherever next for him,” Bell added. “He’s still one of my close friends. Like I said, I’ll still be hanging out with him and talking to him on a daily basis, and I’ll continue to try and make plays for this team.”
With News Wire Services
Source: Berkshire mont