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Now that the Pittsburgh saga is over and the 2019 season is upon us, the pressure’s on Antonio Brown to come through for Oakland, but he’s already having a few setbacks and missing practices.
Raiders coach Jon Gruden said Friday he was “disappointed” that his new top receiver was missing so much time.
“I think we’re all disappointed,” Gruden said, according to ESPN. “We think he’s disappointed. We’d like to get the party started. We’d like to get him out here. He’s a big part of the team. But for the time being, we’re going to continue to work hard and we’re seeing the development of some other receivers we’re excited about.”
Some folks assumed the absence was just Brown being his diva self, but now we understand why he hasn’t been on the field. ESPN reports that Brown’s seeing a foot specialist and is apparently battling a minor foot injury. Reports say he could resume practice as early as next week.
The All-Pro posted a gruesome photo of his blister-scarred feet on twitter.
— Jeff Lorenz (@LorenzSportsMed) August 3, 2019
Not sure if the blisters have anything to do with his current foot injury, but he needs to definitely get those dawgs taken care of regardless.
The Twittersphere had a field day.
Tell him to try washing them…
— TweetleD (@ThruTheBridle) August 4, 2019
cut his feet off and trade him to the Patriots
— Brian Stiver (@BrianStiver) August 5, 2019
This shouldn’t be to much of an issue this year Raider Fans. Enjoy! pic.twitter.com/fApWUpwk5l
— Nikoli Novachenko (@DCSuperNova) August 3, 2019
The jokes kept coming, but Oakland Raiders fans aren’t laughing. If Brown’s health is compromised in any way — especially his feet or knees– that would be disastrous for a Raiders team that’s desperate to improve off of last year’s 4-12 record posted in 2018.
It doesn’t appear serious, but Brown’s backstory and his constant craving for attention make everything concerning him a headline. He wouldn’t have it any other way.
Brown caused a lot of drama during the offseason while he strong-armed his way out of Pittsburgh. The charismatic and unpredictable baller secured a hefty bag from Oakland and is expected to provide inconsistent QB Derek Carr with one of the game’s elite offensive forces.
We know that Brown grinds hard and his workout regiment is compared to the immortal Jerry Rice. However, Rice’s humility and quiet leadership is something that Brown doesn’t have and fans are already concerned that AB will use his feet as an excuse or impediment during the season if it isn’t handled now. He seems to need drama in his life.
Brown was smiling in the photo so it doesn’t appear to be a dire situation and he is addicted to messing with people and creating shock reactions on social media, so who knows where this is going.
It looks likes Antonio Brown is well on his way to blowing up in Oakland, which is very high on my list of things I’m rooting for this football season, and in life frankly.
— Andrew Fillipponi (@ThePoniExpress) August 2, 2019
Brown did miss most of last week with the foot issue, so it can’t be dismissed.
Fortunately, the Raiders didn’t clean the cupboard to acquire Brown (Steelers received a third-round and fifth-round pick in the 2019 NFL Draft), whose relationship with Pittsburgh and his former teammates had deteriorated to an irreparable point. But he just might be the most important person on the team. How he handles his new team, his new contract which is for three years and worth almost $55 million, a new, no-nonsense coach and his new opportunity remain to be seen.
So far, the Raiders are in the same position the Steelers were in, being held hostage by one of the most unpredictable personalities in the game. The only sure thing — and his continuous saving grace — is that Brown will be a beast once he hits the field.