Antonio Brown claimed Sunday that he'll never play in the NFL again -- and then fired off a series of tweets that could ensure exactly that.
The mercurial wide receiver opened the morning with a Twitter rant, hinting at contract grievances against the Raiders and the Patriots, both of whom released him earlier this month, before turning his ire toward prominent league figures with legal histories.
Will not be playing in the @NFL anymore these owners can cancel deals do whatever they want at anytime we will see if the @NFLPA hold them accountable sad they can just void guarantees anytime going on 40m 2 months will see if they pay up !— AB (@AB84) September 22, 2019
Brown lost $29.125 million in guarantees that the Raiders voided after the receiver's reported run-in with general manager Mike Mayock. Brown also stands to lose a $9 million signing bonus from the Patriots, who are due to make the first payment Monday but likely will not want to do so.
Brown can seek recourse with a grievance filed through the NFL Players Association, and it appears that's what he plans to do. It's unclear if he'll seek recourse against the Raiders, Patriots, or both.
Brown had taken a cordial tone toward the Patriots even after they cut him, but that all changed Sunday with the specter of the signing bonus being gone. So, first in Brown's sights was Patriots owner Robert Kraft, who reportedly was enraged by the receiver's threatening text messages to a woman who told Sports Illustrated that Brown made unwanted sexual advances toward her. After those text messages surfaced, Kraft decided Brown was done in New England.
Antonio Brown calls out Robert Kraft after @RapSheet reported the owner was behind the WR's release from the Patriots.
He says he's done playing in the NFL. pic.twitter.com/BTGLVd223Z— Bleacher Report (@BleacherReport) September 22, 2019
"Caught in the parlor" is in reference to Kraft being charged with soliciting prostitution at a South Florida massage parlor earlier this year. Florida officials said last week that they still intend to prosecute Kraft on those charges.
The next target was former NFL tight end Shannon Sharpe, who has been a vocal critic of Brown on Twitter and his FS1 show "Undisputed."
And then it was Steelers quarterback Ben Roethlisberger, with whom Brown had a rocky relationship, leading to the receiver's exit from Pittsburgh after last season.
.@AB84 has deleted these Sunday morning tweets that express contempt for #Patriots owner Bob Kraft, #Steelers QB Ben Roethlisberger and HOF TE @ShannonSharpe. #NFL pic.twitter.com/kItmgGNq5W— Ron Clements (@Ron_Clements) September 22, 2019
He later deleted the tweets criticizing Kraft, Sharpe and Roethlisberger.
Brown finished his rant by praising a Patriots fan who threatened Sports Illustrated writer Robert Klemko, who broke the news about further allegations against the receiver. That tweet also has been deleted.
Brown reportedly had drawn interest from NFL teams, even as the league investigates the sexual-assault claims against him. It'd be surprising if that interest remains after another instance of Brown going off the rails.