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Antonio Brown Says He Has Talked With Cam Newton About Joining Arena League Team

With the National Arena League’s Albany Empire struggling to fill seats during games, the team may need to get creative. Former NFL wide receiver Antonio Brown told WNYT’s Rodger Wyland that he may suit up for the team to help ticket sales and said he has also spoken with Cam Newton about joining the franchise in some capacity. 

Brown told Wyland he’d play in a game with the Empire either May 27 or June 17 with both being home games. As for Newton, it’s unclear where the former NFL MVP stands. 

Brown said he spoke to Newton about joining in some capacity, though the idea that he’d actually play quarterback in the NAL would be a stretch to say the least. Newton was last signed to the Panthers in 2021 but has remained out of the NFL ever since. During that timeframe, he has repeatedly said he deserves to be in the NFL and even went as far as to say that his hair is the reason why teams are reluctant to sign him

It’s plausible that Newton would also consider joining Brown in the team’s ownership group, but that front is also a little tricky. 

Brown has repeatedly said he’s the owner of the Empire, but he recently backtracked and it was reported by Abigail Rubel of the Times Union that Brown isn’t technically an owner, but he is a representative of a trust that owns the team. According to documents provided to the Times Union, the team is owned by Antonio El-Allah Express Trust Enterprise, and Brown has no personal ownership or control over the Empire.

Team officials even told the Times Union that a “foreign citizen” named Antonio El-Allah is the trustee of the enterprise and he owns a 95% ownership stake in the franchise. The former NFL wideout is simply a member of the trust. 

Despite this, Brown clearly has a major say in the franchise’s decisions and has been given a platform to speak on behalf of the team repeatedly, but even with the former NFL star’s presence, the organization has struggled to put people in seats. Albany has averaged roughly 2,500 fans per game so far this season, which is significantly lower than what attendance should be, per Wyland. MVP Arena can seat up to 17,500 people

If things workout for the Albany franchise, then both Brown and Newton would be suiting up for a professional football team for the first time since 2021.