NFL won’t place Antonio Brown on exempt list as long as he’s a free agent

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The NFL continues to investigate Antonio Brown but will not place him on the Commissioner-Exempt list as long as the receiver remains a free agent, the league announced Friday night.

The league, though, said it would reassess if a team signs Brown.

“Antonio Brown was released today by the New England Patriots and is currently an unrestricted free agent,” the NFL said in its statement. “Our office is presently investigating multiple allegations, some of which are the subject of pending litigation. We have as yet made no findings regarding these issues. The investigation is ongoing and will be pursued vigorously and expeditiously.

“As long as Mr. Brown is a free agent, placement on the Commissioner’s exempt list is not appropriate. If he is signed by a club, such placement may become appropriate at any time depending on the status of the investigation. Upon the conclusion of the investigation, he may also be subject to discipline if the investigation finds that he has violated the law or league policies.”

That likely is enough to discourage any team from signing Brown . . . if any team was interested in signing Brown. Brown still would be paid if he were placed on the Commissioner-Exempt list but would be ineligible to practice or play.

Any team interested in signing Brown likely lets the NFL’s investigation play out first.

The NFL met with Britney Taylor for 10 hours Monday about the allegations of rape and sexual assault she levied against Brown in a lawsuit last week. Since then, Brown has become the subject of another accusation of improper conduct with a woman.

The NFL advised Brown to stop contacting the second accuser after he reportedly harassed her via text message, which precipitated his release from the Patriots earlier Friday.

68 responses to “NFL won’t place Antonio Brown on exempt list as long as he’s a free agent

  1. Either the Chiefs or Ravens are going to sign him. Hunt, Hill, Rice, Lewis, and Suggs… These players were protected and enabled by their teams. Meanwhile, NE immediately released Hernandez when he went full RL and released AB over a single text…

  2. Sounds like league-sponsored collusion. Would be sad if this was communicated to and agreed with a team, showing the league does not want an FA to be signed.

  3. I don’t know about you guys but this just seems so surreal it can’t be true. Can one person be such a problem that he feels he can do whatever he wants and not face any consequences. His behavior cost him a $30M contact in Oakland. Now it cost him $15M for this year (and who knows what for next year) all because the guy just can’t behave like a normal human being. I’m just scratching my head that someone can be so clueless about life. His lifestyle is definitely going to take a hit and if he wants to know who to blame all he needs to do is look in the mirror. It’s incomprehensible how much money this guy has cost himself. He worked so hard to be one of the best WRs in the NFL (and possibly could have been one of the best EVER to play in the NFL) but didn’t wrok at all on being a better person. It’s just hard to fathom what has happened with this guy. I wonder when/if the light will ever come on for him.

  4. Ridiculous and cowardly. Typical NFL political posturing. Either he belongs on the exempt list or doesn’t. This is the NFL daring a club to sign him so if that happens they can shift the blame to the team. Just man up and make a decision already.

  5. Crazy to think that Ben and AB could have played their last game last Sunday.
    However, the Steelers are a still a mess even w/o AB. Makes me wonder when/if Tomlin will ever be held accountable for his role in turning the Steelers into a traveling clown show.

  6. Could someone kindly call AB’s grandma and let her he’s free… again. Apparently, AB shouldn’t be using a phone.

  7. So basically Jerruh orchestrated the entire release from Cheatersville and is posturing the league office to enable the next criminal to join d’ boyz? If NE is involved everyone knows there is cheating. If Dallas is involved everyone knows criminals are involved. If both are involved… well, someone shut the front door….

  8. The Pats only released him because they were told they would have to pay out his entire contract on the exempt list if they didn’t release him before he was placed on it.

    It wasn’t because they had a moral epiphany.

  9. I hope more women step forward if they have been sexually harassed by NFL players, and I hope teams give those players the same treatment they are giving Brown.

  10. Based on that he’s not on the list but if signed by a new team he most likely will be. I’d bet there is more than one team weighing the pros and cons of sign now and ride out the storm…

  11. The uncertainty of his future playing status coupled with the 5 million dollar payout on Monday if he was on the roster is why he was cut. The threat of putting AB on the exempt list in effect blackballs him from the league until such time that that threat is lifted.

  12. Tyreek Hill threatened his son’s mom. The same son that was in his moms belly when he was beating her. That loser should be out of the league too. Double standard though because this guy was a steeler and a patriot.

    This dude needs mental help, if not it’s going no where good, when a rich football water thinks he can get away with anything, see oh and Aaron Hernandez

  13. Be surprised if he signs on with another team considering all that has transpired since joining Patriots.

    He and his agent should have been more forthcoming about rape civil suit, but it doesn’t sound like they were.

    Who knows, maybe he wanted out of NE too, once suit was filed and the uproar it caused across the NFL.

    Shenanigans on his part weren’t going to sit well with BB, Kraft unlike Tomlin and Gruden.

  14. AB now the bait in a big ole’ NFL Rat Trap… any team that dares signs him and WHAAAPP!!! the exempt list spring snaps shut on the neck of the next team, and they would have to pay him while ineligible to practice or play.

    Good move… never wanted this cancer on my team in the 1st place. Hope the dude never sets foot on the gridiron again. He deserves all that is coming to him.

  15. Should force the last team to have him eat the entirety of the contract and donate it to charity for not doing due diligence on the player they signed.

  16. This just in: Brown is now on the double-secret “Exempt” list, along with Colin Kaepernick.

    Next up: This. Is. The. XFL!

    Though I wouldn’t be surprised if even Vince McMahon wouldn’t be interested at this point.

  17. This needs to be looked at as a mental health issue. Brown is obviously not right in the head. As easy as it is to hate on him and think of him as just an entitled jerk, there is probably more going on here than meets the eye. Someone close to him, or the league itself, needs to step in and get this guy into counseling before the next headline we read is far more tragic than those we’ve seen over the last few weeks.

  18. Translation- “NFL is glad AB is gone and prays to hear as little as possible about him in the news.”

  19. I never like to wish anyone bad vibes but i never want to see him playing again. The guy is not good for the NFL. We don’t need this man. We like to watch PROFESSIONAL FOOTBALL. NOT THIS. Please NFL do the right thing and ban his ass.

  20. There have been some suggestions that the NFL notified other teams to all keep their hands off AB. But that would be collusion if they did that. What they did do is what this article describes. These are public statements on the situation, they are not instructions to the teams. The teams are then free to look at the situation and make their own decision. If all 32 decide that its not a situation they want around them then thats their prerogative.

    The situation: Any team that signs him inherits a guaranteed media circus, they also have no assurance that he is going to settle down and stop doing things to generate more media frenzy, and the NFL is using words that certainly sound like its highly likely that if they do sign him the league will promptly suspend him so they will not get to benefit from his on field talent. But they will still have to pay him whatever they agreed to.

  21. So he’s not on the Commissioner’s exempt list, but as soon as he signs he will be, and then that team has to pay him until all this ends, if it ever does.
    Now that is a “Do Not Call” list that will actually work.

  22. If he is truly innocent according to him he should take a year off and go after the girl who caused this to begin with.He has nothing to lose because his reputation is destroyed.Now he can file a police report on false accusations if he is innocent. Now he can counter sue but in the meantime please stop writing about him He needs to take a season off.

  23. Patriots do not usally score own goals of this magnitude. If they have to pay that 5 million what a complete waste. But I guess the machine will just keep rolling on. As long as they still have those interchangeable parts in the stores and keep Brady firing it will probably be business as usual.

  24. AB is ” Trouble” for any team that would sign him.[ his recent history proves same] The risks of a signing him .. Far.. outway the benefits that may be received.He needs Mental Health Counseling Before he even considers future employment with the NFL, or any other employer.His current mental health status is an ongoing employment barrier and any employment counselor would soon have to address same with Mr Brown.

  25. This is amazing. 9 months ago he went for 14 catches for 185 yards and 2 TDs against the Saints in Week 16.

    Then all the drama in week 17 and now about 9 months later, it looks like he’s out of the league.

    What an implosion.

  26. In 5 or 10 years you’ll read about this guy being broke and going to prison. He simply doesn’t get it. He’s worse than Charles Haley.

  27. I would say the safe landing spot for him would be Miami. Even if he is suspended most of the year it doesn’t matter, they are tanking this year. You just have to hope he gets his head together next year when you are rebuilding.

  28. Not only does the nutjob lose 30M in guaranteed money, and likely a chance to play in the NFL again, he may of sabotaged a certain trip to Canton.

  29. Exactly what does Drew Rosenhaus put on Antonio Brown’s business cards? Probably something like, Certified Nut Rocks Dumb, Who Sometimes Plays Wide Receiver.

    It took this clown less than one year, to get three jerseys on the clearance racks, LOL.

  30. Hopefully the saga of Brown has finally come to an end.he will now fade away into oblivian with all his millions only to be heard from when he gets in trouble with the law again,it will happen because Brown simply cant help himself.his talent was great,his lust for attention was legendary.goodbye Mr Brown,you can now watch your NFL pals on television from the couch,enjoy your retirement.

  31. How can this league make these statements. As they are interviewing this women for ten hours Brown is harassing a women and bulling her . This league has seen this kid threaten one of your GN’s and yet you still say these words. What does it take to stand up and suspend until further notice. He has been a problem for three of your teams, his actions on feelin he is above it all by nor paying individuals doing work for him, What is up

  32. Either the Chiefs or Ravens are going to sign him. Hunt, Hill, Rice, Lewis, and Suggs… These players were protected and enabled by their teams. Meanwhile, NE immediately released Hernandez when he went full RL and released AB over a single text…

    You have a lot of guts or are just being obtuse if you are trying to give the Pats a pedestal on moral high ground. I say obtuse because everyone with an once of intelligence laughs when you mention the Pats and morals in the same sentence. AB had to go so if someone with the character of a Kraft fires you you know someone is a scum bag or did something only a scumbag would do… ya take the high road in you own little world because everyone is laughing at you.

  33. Could this be Bill playing chess while the rest of the league played checkers? AB is now unavailable to the rest of the league because of Exempt list threat. Payed nothing for AB and made sure he plays for no one else this season. Brilliant!

  34. To all the Patriot fans lashing out at the Chiefs in fear, please come to you senses.

    First off, you do not get to claim the moral high ground as long as you have a CHARGED drug trafficker on you roster.

    Secondly, do the following:
    1) Ask yourself, have you ever be wrongly accused of something?

    2) Ask yourself if you have ever said something stupid in the privacy of your home, and thankfully were not recorded?

    3) Realize the Chiefs suspended Hill as soon as the allegations came out, and kept him suspended till he was CLEARED by both the police and NFL. Unlike the Patriots who let Brown practice and play while under investigation for rape. And are letting Chung practice and play while CHARGED with drug trafficking.

    4) Listen, or read the entire recording. Do not just regurgitate what someone told you.

    5) Realize that Hill was not only CLEARED of the recent allegations, but the recording let to him being cleared of the allegations from college.

    Or the Reader’s Digest version, pull you head out of you posterior.

    On the bright side, you still will have the help of the referees call “roughing the passer” when a defensive player reaches across a Patriot’s offensive linemen’s, that is holding him, shoulder and taps Brady on the shoulder. Hard not to be a good passer when no one is allowed to touch you.

  35. NFL won’t place Antonio Brown on exempt list as long as he’s a free agent

    Why would they put him on the list as long as he’s not officially in the NFL?
    Now once/if another team signs him then the NFL will be forced to do something or nothing, but the fact is they don’t have to make any move at this time!

  36. #justamoguy
    I like your arguments but Hill’s abuse of women goes back to his college days and the recording leaves no doubt he was at the least verbally abusive/harassing to his girlfriend. There was no smoking gun as to the abuse in this case but a blind man could connect the dots. Not sure this is the poster child for strong fan support.

  37. #jkb0162

    Not saying he is a great person. A good portion of football players are not.

    What I am saying is that alot of the facts that came out in the investigation appear to point to the mother as the person who hurt the kid, and points to the fact that she likes to make up stories. This includes the choking incident in college. In the recording he actually confronts her about making up the choking story. In addition she admits in a text message that she was the one that hurt the kid.

    Should he have said “you should be afraid of me too”? No, that was wrong, but he did not follow up with actual violence. I can not speak for you, but I have said far worst to someone in the heat of the moment (admittedly to another guy), but never had the intention to follow up with actual violence.

    As for him pleading guilty in college, many people who do not have the money for an attorney, will plead guilty if offered probation as opposed to risking going to jail.

    In my opinion, his greatest crime is not being smart enough to leave the mother after she filed false charges in college. I would personally go as far as making arrangements so all interactions, such as picking up the child and dropping him off, happen in the presence of a third party.

    I am not sure if I can post links in here or not, or I would. But google “Tyreek Hill investigation”

    Again, not saying he is a great person. What I am saying is he did not appear to doing anything worth suspending him. Definitely can not be compared to Rape and Trafficking drugs.

  38. I hope AB gets another chance and gets help. Nobody is perfect and he hasn’t been proven guilty of a crime.

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