How quickly will the Antonio Brown investigation unfold?

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The NFL lacks the power to compel witnesses not connected to the league to cooperate with Personal Conduct Policy investigations. Sometimes, a witness not connected to the league wants to cooperate.

That’s exactly what’s happening in the Antonio Brown case. His accuser, Britney Taylor, has indicated through her lawyers a willingness to talk.

It could, in theory, happen quickly. The lawsuit is posted online. The lawyers’ names and phone numbers are in the document. The NFL could contact the lawyers right now and arrange a meeting with Britney Taylor.

Then, after talking to Taylor, the NFL could commence the process of exploring other evidence that would potentially corroborate or refute her claims, before eventually talking to Brown.

If, along the way, the Commissioner concludes that Brown “may have violated this Policy by committing” sexual assault or rape, the Commissioner may place Brown on paid leave. The Commissioner’s powers in this regard are very broad; he needs to conclude only that Brown “may” have committed a violation. The content of the lawsuit could be enough to allow Commissioner to include that a violation “may” have happened.

As a practical matter, the decision will be driven at least in part by P.R. concerns. (Indeed, the entire Personal Conduct Policy is a P.R. tool.) The NFL may be frustrated at a certain level by the manner in which As The Antonio Turns has coopted the early days of the NFL’s 100th season. The fact that someone from the league office already has leaked to the Washington Post the fact that the NFL will give “serious consideration” to using this power means that it’s in play, and that the league wants people to realize that it’s in play.

Regardless of how it plays out, time is of the essence. And the first step will be interviewing Britney Taylor. That could happen as soon as tomorrow — if the NFL wants it to.

83 responses to “How quickly will the Antonio Brown investigation unfold?

  1. the raiders knew about this on sept 5

    This would lead one to believe rosenhaus and goodell had to have known, so why are we just knowing about this after ne signed him?

    umm, this proves goodell tries to help other afc teams as i have stated

    If i am the pats, i void the deal and cut bait

  2. More importantly – why is Patrick Chung still playing when he was indicted on felony cocaine charges? Now AB has no charges against him and is talking about suspensions / exemption lists?

  3. redlikethepig says:
    September 11, 2019 at 11:01 am

    There will be all sorts of appeals before he goes to prison.

    This is not EVEN a criminal process, get yourself together mate

  4. If, along the way, the Commissioner concludes that Brown “may have violated this Policy by committing” sexual assault or rape, the Commissioner may place Brown on paid leave.
    ~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
    That is the potential end result of the league investigation–a conclusion. Placing a player on the exempt list is so the league can finish the investigation. It seems the league can look at Brown’s emails/tweets and determine there is likely a problem and then put him on the list right now while they go investigate the situation.

  5. “And the first step will be interviewing Britney Taylor. That could happen as soon as tomorrow — if the NFL wants it to.”

    It could happen today very easily. League has private jets or could pay a business class seat without blinking an eye at the cost, much less things like facetime and skype for a preliminary talk.

  6. I am guessing the legal process will take a while unless there is an early settlement with hush money to make it go away. But if that happens and this never ends up going through court and there is no criminal case against Antonio, then I would think that would have some sort of impact on his discipline. If he was found guilty, especially if it would have been a criminal case, he would be out of the league. These are serious allegations which you would think would call for serious discipline. If the NFL disciplines AB and the legal case drags out but is then dismissed, would AB have a case against the NFL. Ezekial Elliott had some discipline for stuff that ended up not causing him any legal trouble but these are serious allegations against AB.

  7. I would be in favor of anything that prevents AB from playing for the Patriots, BUT this situation doesn’t pass the smell test at all right now. It feels very much like an extortion attempt, and if Brown has text/e-mail evidence that she’s been asking for money over an extended period of time (and not mentioning the r word), the case falls apart pretty quickly.
    I’m not saying he’s innocent. But it’s not like it’s going to be an easy case.

  8. ” why is Patrick Chung still playing when he was indicted on felony cocaine charges? ”

    Because he was hundreds of miles away when it was found and there is some evidence that it may have been forgotten in his property by people doing construction / improvements?

    Or how about league has never suspended or placed players on the commissioners exempt list for small amounts of narcotics or weed before the criminal trial plays out. Just because you hate the Pats and want a different standard to punish them by, it doesn’t work that way

  9. The timing of this lawsuit is suspect. It has a very punitive feel to it.
    As far as what’s documented, there was no police/law enforcement involvement and the accuser kept in contact with Brown during/after said time frame. That being said, I don’t have any idea if Brown assaulted the accuser. Perhaps a league suspension w/o pay until the matter is resolved is warranted?

  10. Brown probably recorded the whole thing, and he’ll pull out the tape at the last minute. If that’s the case, Brown wouldn’t tell anyone until the last minute, not even his own lawyer. Not even the league office. He’s enjoying all the drama and attention way too much to want to end it quickly. I don’t really know if Brown actually wants to play football anymore. He basically quit on his last 2 teams. I think the shot from Burfict a couple years ago did some lasting damage to his will to play. He was so concerned with his helmet a couple weeks before he quit on the Raiders. I really don’t think he wants to be on a football field, but he wants attention. He needs attention. He might even need supervision.

  11. I’m no expert here but assuming the Pat’s have yet to pay AB his $9M signing bonus, just cut him and make him sue for it. The Pat’s can bleed him out financially in litigation and they do have plausible defenses for non-payment. Pat’s dont need him and I believe he has failed all character tests required by NE.

  12. If he is indeed guilty, he has to go and I have no doubt the Patriots will release him.

    But the timing of this is strange, to say the least. She waited until the day he signed with the Patriots to file this suit? He was in better financial shape a month ago, why not do it then? Something reeks.

  13. You have to ask yourself what the easiest path is for the NFL. I would imagine that is placement on the exempt list while things get sorted out.

  14. How many warning signs have we seen with this guy? Eventually one is going to read STOP! Let’s end the NFL/Antonio Brown saga-experiment. His baggage outweighs his worth, more fans will stop following if he is in the fold. #sickofbrown

  15. for all you “money grab” people, if this was strictly for the money why wouldn’t she have done this when he signed his 30 million guaranteed contract?

  16. Homer press on NBC Sports Boston just said Brown’s contract includes a clause that guarantees can be voided if Brown’s actions “materially undermine the team, players, public faith in the team” etc.

    Ie they can cut bait if they want and he’s gotta hand the money back.

  17. Once more we will see this league drag its feet and make some excuse not to look into this guy. After all Brown has been such a model citizen. I still do not get this league who worries about a watch worn and allows a player to threaten a GM and uses racist language is allowed to run Scott free.

  18. JustMyOpinion2000 says:
    September 11, 2019 at 11:11 am

    I am guessing the legal process will take a while unless there is an early settlement with hush money to make it go away. But if that happens and this never ends up going through court and there is no criminal case against Antonio, then I would think that would have some sort of impact on his discipline. If he was found guilty, especially if it would have been a criminal case, he would be out of the league. These are serious allegations which you would think would call for serious discipline. If the NFL disciplines AB and the legal case drags out but is then dismissed, would AB have a case against the NFL. Ezekial Elliott had some discipline for stuff that ended up not causing him any legal trouble but these are serious allegations against AB.

    ***

    I think the answer to your question is “no.” The NFL has its own internal policies separate and apart from criminal or civil law, and the NFL isn’t bound by the outcomes of criminal or civil trials regarding player behavior. The NFL could easily decide that a player violated its policies even if the player is never penalized in a criminal or civil manner.

  19. as a Raiders fan I wish they would stop showing pictures of the Clown I mean Brown with a raiders jersey he is not with the Raiders anymore

  20. a clearly guilty Tyreek Hill playing and suspect Brown not playing gives goodell a tool to keep the patriots out of yet another super bowl. a legitimate commisioner would have thrown hill out of the league and, with evidence, brown should face the same fate . remember all the media clamoring for hill’s banishment?? but on second thought we need him on the field. goodell is a joke as is the entire personal conduct policy of the nfl.

  21. Regardless of Exempt Lists, Belichick isn’t stupid. It will depend on whether after looking at what’s there and talking to Brown the Pats feel the guy is bad, likely innocent or deserving of benefit of the doubt. They won’t care about media or salty mountain of hate, and won’t talk about it – either Brown dresses for the Miami game or he’ll be gone – with no explanation.

  22. Considering which team he is currently under contract to, the commish will quickly sweep this under the rug.

  23. JustMyOpinion2000 says:
    September 11, 2019 at 11:11 am
    I am guessing the legal process will take a while unless there is an early settlement with hush money to make it go away. But if that happens and this never ends up going through court and there is no criminal case against Antonio, then I would think that would have some sort of impact on his discipline. If he was found guilty, especially if it would have been a criminal case, he would be out of the league. These are serious allegations which you would think would call for serious discipline. If the NFL disciplines AB and the legal case drags out but is then dismissed, would AB have a case against the NFL. Ezekial Elliott had some discipline for stuff that ended up not causing him any legal trouble but these are serious allegations against AB.

    *****

    I understand where you are coming from but the league was more than happy to suspend Roethlisburger and there were never any charges filed or convictions.

  24. And as usual ol’ carrot top will provide extra CYA material for immature, criminal, NFL players.

    1st let me say the NFL has always viewed ant type of out of court settlement,or payoff, as if a crime was never committed. And now they wanna make it legal, for the criminals to get paid during investigations.

    My main questions is what does the criminal justice system offer, when the criminal is not a football player. and why do “prima donna nfl players” get so much more? Lady Justice wears a blindfolds to signify that everyone is equal?

  25. tylawspick6 says:
    September 11, 2019 at 11:04 am
    the raiders knew about this on sept 5

    This would lead one to believe rosenhaus and goodell had to have known, so why are we just knowing about this after ne signed him?

    umm, this proves goodell tries to help other afc teams as i have stated

    If i am the pats, i void the deal and cut bait
    —–
    I’m sure NE knew about this as well.They probably just gambled on the fact that this won’t be addressed until after the season, which could still be the case. If so, after the season is up they will dump AB and Chung, who I’m shocked is still on the team after being indicted for cocaine possession, which could mean prison time if convicted.

    Goodell destroyed the Spygate tapes and his explanation was that “It was the right thing to do”. He said he had nothing to hide, but if so why destroy them? Please don’t tell us he only helps other AFC teams.

  26. If Brown and his agent knew about this pending lawsuit and didn’t disclose it to New England, wouldn’t that give the Patriots grounds to void the contract . . . as it wouldn’t have been negotiated in good faith on the part of Brown and Rosenhaus! I think they would have had an obligation to disclose this risk!

  27. I know I shouldn’t be, but I’m still shocked that neither the Raiders nor the NFL disciplined AB at all for his attack on Mike Mayock. If the League is only going to act on their perception of how the public feels, they are doomed to get disciplinary matters wrong over and over. Not that that’s a surprise to anybody.

  28. jlbay says:
    September 11, 2019 at 11:35 am
    If Brown and his agent knew about this pending lawsuit and didn’t disclose it to New England, wouldn’t that give the Patriots grounds to void the contract . . . as it wouldn’t have been negotiated in good faith on the part of Brown and Rosenhaus! I think they would have had an obligation to disclose this risk!

    1 0 Rate This
    ##############
    Nailed it!

  29. jlbay says:
    September 11, 2019 at 11:35 am
    If Brown and his agent knew about this pending lawsuit and didn’t disclose it to New England, wouldn’t that give the Patriots grounds to void the contract . . . as it wouldn’t have been negotiated in good faith on the part of Brown and Rosenhaus! I think they would have had an obligation to disclose this risk!

    ****

    The court documents are dated for yesterday, September 10.

  30. HagemeisterPark says:
    September 11, 2019 at 11:04 am
    More importantly – why is Patrick Chung still playing when he was indicted on felony cocaine charges? Now AB has no charges against him and is talking about suspensions / exemption lists?
    ———
    This is an easy one. Chung was never even arrested for this. He was only summonsed. The DA believes in treatment for those with drug issues rather than jail time. Very few, if any, people in his jurisdiction serve time for this. This is well documented and there is a good article about it in one of the NH newspapers. Laconia or Manchester, I forget which. That’s why.

  31. If there is an active lawsuit against Brown, I would think Brown’s attorneys should be allowed to be present for the NFL’s questioning of THE plaintiff in that lawsuit. That could slow things down.

  32. blkandgld4eva says:

    I’m sure NE knew about this as well.They probably just gambled on the fact that this won’t be addressed until after the season, which could still be the case. If so, after the season is up they will dump AB and Chung, who I’m shocked is still on the team after being indicted for cocaine possession, which could mean prison time if convicted.

    Goodell destroyed the Spygate tapes and his explanation was that “It was the right thing to do”. He said he had nothing to hide, but if so why destroy them? Please don’t tell us he only helps other AFC teams.

    ==——————–===========================

    Guess you forgot the part where the tapes were played for the media first…

  33. HagemeisterPark says:

    September 11, 2019 at 11:04 am

    More importantly – why is Patrick Chung still playing when he was indicted on felony cocaine charges? Now AB has no charges against him and is talking about suspensions / exemption lists?
    __________________________________________________________________________________

    Facts: The police responded to a home break-in alarm. Mr. Chung was not even in the state of NH at the time of the trigging of the alarm. That means he was not at home when the police went in.

    The drugs were found on the kitchen island in plain site… and from reports it appears that where spilled out.

    To date local news has it, that it seems a family member had access to the house that weekend and they may have been trying to get back in to retrieve the drugs.

    Yes it was the vacation home of Mr. Chung. FACT: He had not been at the residence in over a month.

    So once the NFL saw those FACTS they will allow the investigation to run it’s course. BEFORE they act. Which is what they did in the Tyreek Hill case. That is what they should do… and it appears they are doing just that.

  34. “Goodell destroyed the Spygate tapes and his explanation was that “It was the right thing to do”. He said he had nothing to hide, but if so why destroy them?”

    Supposedly to “protect the shield”, but it was obviously to protect the team, the coach, and the owner. The commish has a special relationship with them.

  35. J Huber says:

    September 11, 2019 at 11:34 am

    And as usual ol’ carrot top will provide extra CYA material for immature, criminal, NFL players.

    1st let me say the NFL has always viewed ant type of out of court settlement,or payoff, as if a crime was never committed. And now they wanna make it legal, for the criminals to get paid during investigations.

    My main questions is what does the criminal justice system offer, when the criminal is not a football player. and why do “prima donna nfl players” get so much more? Lady Justice wears a blindfolds to signify that everyone is equal?

    —–‐——-

    It isn’t a criminal case. It’s a civil matter. Civil cases and justice rarely go together.

  36. HagemeisterPark says:
    September 11, 2019 at 11:04 am
    More importantly – why is Patrick Chung still playing when he was indicted on felony cocaine charges? Now AB has no charges against him and is talking about suspensions / exemption lists?
    ————————
    First of all get your facts correct. Chung was charged with a misdemeanor not a felony. It was at his vacation home where contractors were doing work he was not even in residence.

  37. tylawspick6 says:
    September 11, 2019 at 11:04 am
    the raiders knew about this on sept 5

    This would lead one to believe rosenhaus and goodell had to have known, so why are we just knowing about this after ne signed him?

    umm, this proves goodell tries to help other afc teams as i have stated

    If i am the pats, i void the deal and cut bait

    As usual you violate your own vitriolic and typically unsubstantiated rants.

    1) There is no worldwide deep state conspiracy against the Pats. Please get over it. You clearly do not know what “proof” is.

    2) You always talk about how this never happens on the Pats…we’re just too good. Well, no you’re not you’re just like every other team out there trying to combine talent with the risk of getting trash. If they were as good as you always say they are, then we are just finding out about it because we are just finding about it. No conspiracy.

    3) Yeah. Duh. You cut bait if this turns bad. That isn’t exactly insight.

    Personally I wouldn’t have picked him up in the first place but because EVERYONE KNEELS TO THE PATRIOT WAY (yeah didnt Gordon get suspended again last year, Hernandez murder a couple of people, Edelmann PEDs, etc?) everyone they pick is above it.

    News flash. No they are not.

  38. Hoping the Pats just cut bait here. With Kraft’s offseason, he cannot afford more bad press for the franchise involving women. No one outside of Brown and the accuser know if the allegations are true, but Brown destroyed his credibility loooong ago.

    Obviously the Pats and Raiders didn’t know as proven by the amount of guaranteed money he was given. But they gotta show him the door and fast.

  39. Johnny Football was kicked out of the NFL and blackballed on accusations that are a lot less serious than the ones AB is facing.

  40. From a legal standpoint, there is absolutely NO REASON for a victim to ever speak with the accused employer about the assault.

    Any statements made to NFL investigators (or media) can be used by the accused in the civil trial, so any inconsistencies could be seriously damaging to her lawsuit. A smart lawyer would tell their client to stay quiet while they do all the work.

    The fact that she is incredibly “willingness to talk” to the NFL makes it highly suspicious as to motive. The ONLY purpose would be to put pressure on the accused to settle the claim – ie “money grab” as there is no valid, legal logic to it.

  41. Um yeah so am I the only one to see the NFL’s police powers being expanded here?
    Or am I wrong?

    The woman files suit and the same day says she will cooperate with an NFL investigation, and the NFL starts said investigation. So will the results of the NFL investigation be used in the suit? Seems likely. If it goes to court, or even as far as depositions, will the NFL investigations people testify or be deposed? What about their resulting documentation, will that be submitted as evidence in the suit?

    See, the NFL is soon to be used and regarded as an accepted investigative body, conferring credibility on them that is – well, how to say this delicatley – curious.

  42. What a hot potato… Who will the Patriots pawn him off to? Just another nail in the league’s coffin even though she’s more then likely only after $$$

  43. This accusation stinks to high heaven. She knows a case would never hold up in court, so let’s get go away money. This is the antithesis of 2019, use victim-hood and court of public opinion as a weapon. She kept working with him and staying in contact with him over and over again, doesn’t sound like a victim. And the timing of this seems strategic.

  44. “It isn’t a criminal case. It’s a civil matter. Civil cases and justice rarely go together.”
    =======

    Pay attention and you’d know they seldom go together in criminal cases either.

  45. rideforjesus says:
    September 11, 2019 at 11:46 am

    Facts: The police responded to a home break-in alarm. Mr. Chung was not even in the state of NH at the time of the trigging of the alarm. That means he was not at home when the police went in.

    The drugs were found on the kitchen island in plain site… and from reports it appears that where spilled out.

    To date local news has it, that it seems a family member had access to the house that weekend and they may have been trying to get back in to retrieve the drugs.

    Yes it was the vacation home of Mr. Chung. FACT: He had not been at the residence in over a month.

    So once the NFL saw those FACTS they will allow the investigation to run it’s course. BEFORE they act. Which is what they did in the Tyreek Hill case. That is what they should do… and it appears they are doing just that.
    ——————————————-
    If what you say is true, it sounds like he did nothing wrong. So why was he indicted in the first place?

  46. “as a Raiders fan I wish they would stop showing pictures of the Clown I mean Brown with a raiders jersey he is not with the Raiders anymore”

    Lolz well they don’t have one yet in a Pats uni and may never, and they generally shows photos in the most recent team jersey so they’re not showing him as a Steeler

    We’ll know in about 10 minutes if he’s on the field in Foxboro in a Pats jersey how the next step of this will play out

  47. The commissioner will have an impossible time explaining why Tyreke Hill is still playing while Brown would be on the exempt list. Then again, King Goodell can do whatever he wants with impunity. If the other owners want to use him to gang up on one of their own, there is nothing to stop them. Then again, Patriots continue to embarrass other owners year after year with their superior management and play on the field.

  48. Talk of Rosenhaus and Brown culpability, in not informing BB of something that has not happened, is nonsense. You could apply that standard to every player in the league. Even if they were told something will happen, it is not actionable.

  49. What the heck happened to Due Process in the country. It is one of the most important pieces of our constitutional rights.

  50. What if the NFL investigators want to question Brown and he says “I’m not answering your questions on advice of my lawyers due to the possible criminal case and pending civil case?” Will the NFL suspend him then?

  51. If you read the emails, it sounds like he is mad about her and her mother trying to get money by accusing him more than it is about him assaulting her. If you do a little more investigation you will see where someone texted him and said they have proof of her saying she was just trying to to get money. This proof supposedly is texts and audio. Whether that’s true or not we will find out

  52. They suspend he appeals and plays the entire season. Then the suspension is upheld and next season he not allowed to play, of course next season he is off the Patriots contract anyway so the Patriots feel no repercussion from his actions. Which seems wrong, but he did ot did not do this before joining NE.

  53. mikespillane337 says:
    September 11, 2019 at 4:13 pm
    If you read the emails, it sounds like he is mad about her and her mother trying to get money by accusing him more than it is about him assaulting her. If you do a little more investigation you will see where someone texted him and said they have proof of her saying she was just trying to to get money. This proof supposedly is texts and audio. Whether that’s true or not we will find out

    2 1 Rate This

    —————————-

    She is in deep trouble if there is evidence of extortion after a consensual relationship ever existed.

    Rosenhaus sounded very confident.

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