Antonio Brown is an All-Pro free-agent wide receiver wrapped in controversy -- and nearly two dozen teams still have interest in signing him despite the baggage he could bring.
At least 20 teams, including almost every playoff-bound team, have been interested in signing Brown, Bleacher Report reported Friday. The New England Patriots, who signed Brown in the beginning of the season after the receiver forced his way out of the Oakland Raiders, reportedly were not among the teams.
Brown, a seven-time Pro Bowler and four-time All-Pro selection, has 841 catches for 11,263 receiving yards and 75 touchdowns. However, he’s faced a string of serious off-field allegations.
Brown was accused in a lawsuit by his former trainer of sexual assault and rape. Separately, he was accused in a Sports Illustrated report of sexual assault. Brown met with the league over the allegations but the NFL has not dished out any discipline. He could face a lengthy suspension or could be subjected to the commissioner’s exempt list if he did sign with a team.
His erratic social media behavior also has raised eyebrows. Last week, he accused the league of being racist and called his former teammate Ben Roethlisberger a “loser” and wondered aloud why current players who had been arrested in the past were still allowed to play.
Brown also has made references to Patriots owner Robert Kraft’s own legal scandal and has vowed to quit the NFL altogether.
The Patriots released him this past September.
No team has officially been named in expressing interest in Brown, but it will be interesting to see whether a franchise would put up with potential headaches just to win a few games.