Article by: Justin Imler
No, this title is not clickbait, Antonio Brown has literally threatened retirement if he is not able to use his old style of helmet, in place of the new style that recently became mandatory starting this season. The drama surrounding Brown is back into full swing, even though he has yet to have an official training camp practice with his new team the Oakland Raiders. Antonio Brown has completely been away and out of contact with the team for a little over a week now according to reports. He’s been off seeing several different specialists to get opinions on his frostbitten feet. Yes, you heard me right.
Before the helmet drama, it was announced that Brown has been sidelined due to severe frostbite on the bottoms of his feet due to wearing improper footwear in a cryotherapy machine. The details are unknown, as to how long Brown would be out for, but now the Raiders have even bigger problems.
Long story short, Brown is refusing to wear the new NFL mandated helmets and is requesting to wear his old style of helmet he’s been wearing his entire nine-year NFL career. Brown’s reason for this request is apparently due to the new style of helmet obstructing his vision when running routes and catching the football. Brown first knew that this was taking effect back in May, when the one-year grace period for the new helmets was eliminated, which meant that everyone would be required to wear them starting in 2019. It seems that Brown and his team have been attempting to fight this ever since, and unsurprisingly, have failed.
Now we obviously don’t know if Brown will actually retire from football, but what we do know is that the NFL will not make an exception to make sure he stays in the league. The NFL is clearly bigger than one player, and the last thing the league is going to do is roll over and let one egotistical wide receiver make demand after demand. At this point, I’m starting to feel bad for the Oakland Raiders. They’ve been the next team to take on the drama show that is Antonio Brown. Back in March, when they acquired Brown from the Pittsburgh Steelers, some said they got a bargain for the all-pro WR by only giving up a 3rd and a 5th round pick in this year’s draft. However, looking at the situation now, the drama and distraction that is Antonio Brown hasn’t gone away since joining his new team, it’s seemingly gotten worse. As a Steelers fan, I’m more than happy that he’s someone else’s problem, but I know what it’s like to have that sort of distraction on your football team, and it is not fun.
News broke out early this morning that Antonio Brown had officially lost his grievance with the NFL (shocker) and will be required to wear the new style of helmet for the foreseeable future. With this news also came an instagram post from Brown confirming that the all pro wideout will not be retiring, and is looking forward to joining his teammates on the field as soon as possible. Brown was seen at the Raiders' practice in street clothes today with his agent Drew Rosenhaus.
Brown's full Instagram post yesterday read:
"While I disagree with the arbitrator's decision, I'm working on getting back to full health and looking forward to rejoining my teammates on the field. I'm excited about this season, appreciate all the concerns about my feet! #AlwaysAFight #Represent #itsbiggerthanme"
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