Antonio Brown Says Patriots Would 'Rather Let Me Go Than Be Great'
Antonio Brown had a short, but dramatic stint with the New England Patriots. His tenure in New England lasted 11 days, giving hope to Patriots nation that New England's passing game was trending upward, just for their hearts to get ripped out when the team cut Brown.
During an interview this week with HOT 97, Brown opened up, though he didn't go into very much detail, about his time with the Patriots. But during the interview he went as far as to say New England was more worried about releasing Brown than being a great football team.
“(The Patriots) didn’t want to see me get off. They didn’t want to see me be great,” Brown said. “They’d rather let me go than be great.”
Brown was then asked why head coach Bill Belichick would sign the former All-Pro receiver if he didn't want Brown on the team. The ex-Patriot said his termination wasn't Belichick's doing, saying it "was over his head," implying that owner Robert Kraft was the one that made the decision to cut ties with Brown.
“I wanted them to need me there, man," Brown said. "Want and need are two different things, you know?”
Kraft being the reason for Brown's release from New England may have been why the veteran receiver opted to call out the Patriots' owner on Twitter not too long after Brown became a free agent for the second time in a month.
He later apologized for making those comments on social media.
During his one game with the Patriots, which came in Week 2 against the Dolphins, Brown caught four passes for 56 yards and a touchdown. New England could have certainly used his services for the remainder of the season, as their receiving corp struggled mightily down the stretch and was one of the reasons they lost in the Wild-Card round of the playoffs to the Titans. But there was too much baggage that came along with Brown, which is why his stint with the Patriots lasted a week and a half.
Brown is currently on the NFL commissioners exempt list. Once the league is done investigating the case that involved Brown's alleged sexual misconduct against two women, they can then determine if he is fit to play again in the NFL.