Seahawks left tackle Duane Brown opened up to a former teammate about his departure from Houston, and admitted his frustration with the team’s negotiating tactics as well as comments by owner Bob McNair.
In a podcast with former Texans running back Arian Foster, Brown went into some details about his holdout, contract talks and eventual trade to the Seahawks. But it was clear after months of acrimony that McNair’s comments about “inmates running the prison” were something he couldn’t let pass.
“I had to voice my displeasure,” Brown said, via Matt Young of the Houston Chronicle. “There was so many other people who wanted to but that fear factor was there. But I was like ‘[screw it’], you don’t have to, I will.'”
Of course, the next week he was traded to the Seahawks, but there was plenty of acrimony between him and the team already, centering on his hopes for a new contract and the subsequent holdout.
“It was bigger than football for me at that point,” Brown said. “I was disrespected. I can’t walk in that building and only play football. You have to interact with these people at some point. I’m not one of those people that can fake my way through that [stuff]. I can’t. It was too far gone, and the departure was needed. It had nothing to do with me wanting to get out of Houston or leave my teammates. Not at all.”
Brown traced the beginning of the end of his time there to a failed drug test in 2015 (a potential 10-game suspension was overturned on appeal). He tore a quadriceps muscle that year, and didn’t make any friends upstairs when he protested during the national anthem while he was recovering from the injury.
“I wanted to finish my career there, and I wanted security doing that,” Brown said. “I made it known right at the end of the season. There was no conversation throughout the whole offseason about it, which is why I didn’t show up to anything. There was a conversation around minicamp where they said we can’t do deals with two years left, but they’ve done it before. Basically they were like, ‘We’ve done it before but you’re not worth that.’ So, I’m like, ‘OK, well, I’m not coming to anything then.'”
The Seahawks were happy to take him off Houston’s hands, but it seems apparent his issues with the Texans were far beyond money.