Teams interested in signing Tom Brady were under the “impression” that the star quarterback was looking to bring on embattled free-agent NFL wide receiver Antonio Brown as a part of the deal, according to a new report.
Tom Brady announced Tuesday that he would be ending his time with New England to pursue his football future “elsewhere.” Several teams entered the Brady sweepstakes including the Las Vegas Raiders, the Los Angeles Chargers and the Tampa Bay Buccaneers, with whom he reportedly reached “an agreement in principle” later that night.
According to the NFL Network, part of Brady’s negotiations maybe have included bringing on Brown.
“The word among teams interested in Tom Brady were among the impression that Brady wanted to bring Antonio Brown with him to a new team,” the NFL Network's Ian Rapoport tweeted.
The NFL Network's Tom Pelissero added:
Brown has not played in the league since September. He previously played for the Pittsburgh Steelers before joining the Oakland Raiders in the off-season. He did not play any regular-season games for the Raiders and was released following a turbulent offseason.
He was then picked up by the Patriots but played only one game before he was released after 11 days in the wake of sexual assault allegations.
During his short time with the Patriots, Brady reportedly took Brown on and even offered him to stay in his home while he acclimated to the team.
According to an ESPN report earlier this month, the two remained in touch. Brady reportedly told Brown to stay mentally and physically strong in the hopes that the two could play again next season.
Following an arrest and a series of outbursts in January, Brown offered a number of public apologies to his former teammates and the organizations he played for, going so far as to call himself the “cancer” of the league.
It’s unclear if Brown will be eligible to play this season regardless of Brady’s wishes as he is still under investigation by the NFL.