We need to stop talking about Antonio Brown as a football story

The conversations around the NFL star’s release have all centered on his future. It’s a problem that goes beyond sports

In the hours following Friday’s announcement that wide receiver Antonio Brown was released by the New England Patriots amid mounting allegations of sexual misconduct only 11 days after signing with the team, the media served up a competitive play-by-play on his status. TMZ reported Brown “looking sad” as he touched down in Miami. CBS pondered “why the Patriots could be in trouble if things get any worse”. Iterations of “Brown out. What now?” sprouted up innumerably across the web. Brown, for his part, tweeted eight similar “thank you” messages to the Patriots for the opportunity and a “Just got fired on Friday” with a facepalm emoji. A sizable chunk of the thousands of comments in response to his posts invoked God and prayer for Brown’s resolve to stay strong and keep fighting. He capped off his thread with a photo sitting on the hood of a Rolls Royce in front of a private jet, with the caption: Beat the odds.

Brown will not face criminal charges for the accusations leading to his dismissal, including most notably one of rape in a civil lawsuit by his former trainer, Britney Taylor (Brown has denied the allegations). He took again to Twitter on Sunday morning to answer the headlines’ musings himself. He said he was quitting the NFL and took shots at Patriots owner Robert Kraft and his former teammate Ben Roethlisberger. Earlier this week, Taylor spent 10 hours in discussion with the NFL investigation team going over her lawsuit. Her social media profiles have been wiped clean.

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