Antonio Brown's Latest Move Completely Escalates On-The-Field Drama

Antonio Brown's time with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers ended in a very public outburst on January 2 when he tore off his jersey and protective gear on the sidelines, and eventually stormed off the field, per Sports Illustrated. Following that eruption, information surfaced that Brown and the Buccaneers staff had differing opinions on the wide receiver's health going into their game against the New York Jets.

The day after Brown's dramatic exit, Buccaneers head coach Bruce Arians was asked if he was aware that Brown was dealing with an injured ankle. "Arians said ['No,] We had a conversation and he left the field,'" NFL on Fox's Sara Walsh reported. During a press conference on January 3, Arians told the media he was not informed about any injury for the star receiver. "I mean, what happened ... It was pretty obvious what happened. He left the field and that was it," Arians told the press, per The coach implied that the eruption was due to issues with Brown's mental wellness. "I wish him well. I hope if he needs help, gets some. It's very hard because I do care about him," Arians added.

Apparently, there was a breakdown of communication as the Buccaneers claimed to believe Brown was fit to play, but Brown disagreed. When Brown was asked to re-enter the game, he refused, citing his injured ankle. Brown was told at that very moment he was off the team, per NFL Network's Ian Rappaport. The former Buc later published screenshots that added fuel to the drama.

Antonio Brown posts receipts to back his claim

On January 6, Antonio Brown took to Twitter in hopes of adding context to his dramatic on-the-field departure. Although coach Bruce Arians claimed ignorance about Brown potentially tweaking his ankle prior to the January 2 game, the wide receiver shared screenshots of a conversation between the two that appeared to show otherwise. "This is BA. Make sure your ready to go tomorrow. We ARE NOT resting for the playoffs," Arians texted Brown. The talented receiver implied that the Tampa Bay Buccaneers staff did not care about his physical well-being, as he tweeted, "Health over Wealth # Barbarian," alongside the screenshots. "I'm all in coach really can't get to full speed I wanna win wanna be there if I wake up tomorrow feel better," Brown wrote in response to his former coach. Arians seemed open to a discussion and asked Brown to visit his office the next day. "We'll talk it out," he replied.

Although Brown was taking an explicit shot at the Buccaneers coaching staff with his "Health over Wealth" tweet, he did not want to implicate any of his former teammates. "Don't get it twisted. My brothers have been good to me," he wrote in a follow-up tweet roughly two hours later. Brown blamed the Buccaneers franchise, and not the players. "They have been good to me and knew nothing about my talks with coach last week," he added.

The former Buccaneer also used his lawyer to further attack the team.

Antonio Brown's fiery claims against his team

In a statement issued through his lawyer on January 5, Antonio Brown gave his rendition of the events surrounding his explosive sideline display, per NFL Network's Tom Pelissero. Similar to earlier reports, Brown claimed he learned about his release from the team in the middle of the game on January 2. "I didn't quit. I was cut. I didn't walk away from my brothers. I was thrown out," the NFL star said through his lawyer, Sean Burstyn. Apparently, there was a heated exchange between Brown and head coach Bruce Arians. "I took a seat on the sideline and my coach came up to me, very upset, and shouted, 'What's wrong with you? What's wrong with you?' I told him, 'It's my ankle,'" Brown said. Arians allegedly snapped when the wide receiver would not get back on the field. "Instead, he shouted at me, 'YOU'RE DONE!" Brown recalled.

That same day, Brown's lawyer released his own statement that defended his client. "Antonio Brown never faked an injury in his life," Burstyn tweeted. The attorney made strong allegations against the franchise, and claimed they wanted to blame Brown's outburst as "the product of mental illness." Burstyn ended his statement with strong language. "They cut him, now they cage him."

The situation became even messier as Brown shared more screenshots.

Antonio Brown takes a shot at Tom Brady's trainer

On January 6, Antonio Brown took aim at trainer Alex Guerrero — who is famed for working closely with Tom Brady, per Pro Football Talk. Brown posted a screenshot of a conversation between him and Guerrero that took place on December 24 to his Instagram Story. The star receiver tagged both Brady and Guerrero, and claimed that the trainer owed him $100,000 since they stopped working together, via The Athletic's Greg Auman. However, Guerrero seemed eager to repay Brown; "Please let me know where you want me to send the balance," he wrote. Brown later deleted the post.

To further complicate matters in the already drama-filled situation, an Instagram influencer known as Louise claimed she spent a wild night with Brown the night before his on-the-field blow-up. Louise claimed that she snuck into Brown's hotel — to circumvent COVID-19 protocol — to shack up with the NFL star. "I thought, okay, I'll just go see what this is about because it's Antonio Brown, it's the day before the Jets game, I'll go," she told the Daily Mail on January 6. When Louise saw Brown's epic sideline tantrum, she decided to go public with their rendezvous. "When I saw him run off the field, I was like, 'I have to say something because I witnessed a lot of craziness (Saturday) night,'" she told the New York Post on January 6. Louise is best-known for making headlines in 2020 when she posted herself licking a toilet seat in hopes of contracting COVID-19.