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Monday, January 27, 2020

Jon Gruden defends Antonio Brown: ‘It’s not been a distraction’

Antonio Brown has made headlines for all the wrong reasons during his first offseason with the Oakland Raiders, but head coach Jon Gruden insists none of that has been a detriment to the team.

Brown practiced on Tuesday amid his latest grievance against the NFL, and Gruden said the star receiver wore a certified helmet and is “all-in.” Gruden was later asked if Brown’s highly publicized helmet dispute or unfortunate foot injury have become a distraction for the Raiders, and he defended the Pro Bowler.

It would appear that Gruden and Raiders GM Mike Mayock are playing good cop, bad cop with Brown, and Gruden is clearly the former. Mayock essentially gave Brown an ultimatum last week and told him he needs to decide where his priorities lie, while Gruden is saying publicly that the receiver’s helmet grievance is an important issue.

Brown is doing everything he can to keep wearing the same helmet he has had since his rookie year despite already losing one grievance over it. He’s even reportedly gone as far as to try to trick the Raiders by wearing a bootleg helmet, but apparently Gruden isn’t concerned.



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