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#pounditTuesday, January 31, 2023

Antonio Brown says Bucs tried to pay him to go to mental health facility

Antonio Brown has claimed the Tampa Bay Buccaneers tried to force him to play hurt, and the star receiver has now made another troubling allegation against the organization.

Brown and his attorney, Sean Burstyn, sat down for an interview with Bryant Gumbel for HBO’s “Real Sports” this week. The entire interview will air on Tuesday night, but the show has released a preview. In it, Brown and Burstyn say the Bucs offered to pay Brown $200,000 to check into a mental health treatment facility.

“These guys at the Tampa Bay Bucs tried to make an agreement with me and give me $200,000 to go to the crazy house so these guys can look like they know what they’re talking about,” Brown said. “These guys are unprofessional.”

Brown then instructed Burstyn to share the details of the proposed agreement. Burstyn said the Bucs wanted Brown to sit out and admit he had mental health issues.

“The offer was basically that Antonio would sit on the sidelines, go on some list and commit himself to some form of intensive mental health treatment,” Burstyn said. “We were specifically told in writing by the general manager twice, ‘Don’t spin this any other way.'”

Brown has insisted he does not have any mental health issues. He said recently that his mental health is in a good place and that he only stripped his clothes off and left the field in Week 17 because Bucs head coach Bruce Arians kicked him off the sideline. Arians says Brown threw a fit about not getting the ball enough. Brown told Gumbel there is no truth to that and that he knew Tom Brady would get him the ball. He insists he only could not play because of his ankle injury. You can see the full clip below:

One former NFL player recently speculated that Brown hasn’t been the same since a vicious hit he took years ago. Brown is determined to push back at that narrative. It seems like it will be part of his and Burstyn’s strategy when they inevitably take legal action against the Bucs.

Photo: Oct 14, 2021; Philadelphia, Pennsylvania, USA; Tampa Bay Buccaneers wide receiver Antonio Brown (81) against the Philadelphia Eagles at Lincoln Financial Field. Mandatory Credit: Eric Hartline-USA TODAY Sports

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