A Disturbing Report About Antonio Brown

Antonio Brown was an NFL player of some renown – – until something happened in a game between the Bucs and the Jets which caused him to take off his uniform and his pads on the sidelines and then storm off the field while the game was still in progress.  That was certainly his last appearance in a real NFL game and is possibly the last time he had any real interaction with any NFL team.

Antonio Brown has had a history of unusual behaviors some of which involved interacting with law enforcement officials and/or other parts of the US legal system.  He has been accused of sexual assault; he has been convicted of reckless driving; he attacked someone who came to his home to move him out of his house.  Currently, Antonio Brown is in a house with police on the outside of that house and the police have a warrant for Brown’s arrest.  It is not clear from reporting the entirety of the charges in that warrant and the police are not characterizing the situation as a “standoff” or as a “hostage situation” – – leaving open the question as to how or why this has been ongoing for about 72 hours.

I have no credentials as a mental health expert, but in my layman’s understanding of the world, it is clear to me that Antonio Brown needs behavioral assistance.  I fear that the problem in this case may be that Antonio Brown has convinced himself that he is OK and that just as all his previous escapades have faded into our societal background, so will this one – – and the next one and…  His involvement with the NFL is over; hopefully, his erratic behaviors now and in the future will not end in with a more serious set of consequences for him and for someone he has interacted with.

Moving on …  There has been a “major signing” in this MLB free agent season; the Texas Rangers have signed Jacob deGrom for 5 years and $185M.  I see this decision by the Rangers as a high risk/high reward situation.

  • There can be no question that deGrom is an elite starting pitcher.  He has started 209 games and pitched to a career ERA of 2.52.  In 2021, his season ERA was 1.08.  So, you may wonder, “What’s the risk?”
  • Jacob deGrom will be 35 years old in June 2023.  He has had injury issues in each of the last 3 seasons; in the 2022 season he only managed to pitch 64.1 innings over the course of 11 starts.

So, what might the Rangers be getting for that $185M guaranteed contract?  Will they get the 4-time All-Star and 2-time Cy Young Award winner – – or will they get someone who cannot give them even 100 innings of performance in a season?

One other aspect of this signing is the fact that deGrom will leave the Mets where he has been for his entire 9-year career so far.  His status in “Mets’ lore” is not quite the same as that of Tom Seaver but there are lots of similarities.  Just as it was “unusual” to see Seaver in a Reds’ uniform or a White Sox uniform, it will be unusual to see deGrom in a Rangers uniform starting next April.

One other thing happened over the weekend related to MLB.  The Baseball Hall of Fame’s “Contemporary Era Committee” voted to put Fred McGriff into the Baseball Hall of Fame.  There are 16 members of this Committee and selection for the Hall of Fame requires that a candidate receive a minimum of 12 votes.  McGriff was named on all 16 ballots submitted so he made it to the Hall easily.  Here are some other candidates and how many votes they received:

  • Don Mattingly – – 8 votes
  • Curt Schilling – – 7 votes
  • Dale Murphy – – 6 votes

Interestingly, there were four players under consideration by the Committee who have been connected with “steroids”/”PEDs”.  This Committee is not the same as the Baseball Writers Association who vote for inductees until their eligibility expires.  This Committee is sort of like a “second opinion” on various candidates’ worthiness for the Hall; this Committee includes six members of the Hall of Fame, seven MLB executives and 3 members of the media who cover baseball.  That Committee considered these players and all of them received fewer than 4 votes – – well shy of the 12 votes needed for entry to the Hall of Fame:

  • Albert Belle
  • Barry Bonds
  • Roger Clemens
  • Raphael Palmeiro

Next …  The US may be out of the World Cup but that does not mean that there is no soccer news to think about.  Cristiano Ronaldo had been part of Manchester United in the English Premier League up to the start of the World Cup hiatus.  Let’s just say that all was not well inside the club and Man U chose to release Ronaldo as he left to play for his native Portugal in the World Cup.  That was unusual enough, but Ronaldo is now in a situation that is even more unusual.

Reports say that the Saudi Arabian club, Al Nassr, has offered Ronaldo $75M a year to come and play for the club in the Saudi Arabian league.  If you are wondering why an elite talent like Ronaldo might want to play in a second-tier league even at such a lucrative salary, it is also reported that Ronaldo would be able to choose the coach for that team if he so desires.  In essence, he would be a “player-GM” for the squad.

But wait, there’s more…  Ronaldo is 37 years old, and the contract offered to him would be for 3 years at $75M per year.  He would have the option to retire and take on an “ambassadorial role” for the club because the sense in the Saudi Arabian soccer community is that his star power and influence might help the Saudis land the hosting rights for the 2030 FIFA World Cup.  If Qatar can be a host, why not Saudi Arabia?

Finally, yesterday was Dwight Perry’s final Sideline Chatter column in the Seattle Times.  While I will certainly miss reading his column, I surely wish him health, happiness and prosperity in a well-deserved retirement.  I have a small inventory of his comments for future use in closing these rants; let me close today with one from yesterday’s final column that will demonstrate why I am going to miss Sideline Chatter:

“A skunk showed up in the stands at last Sunday’s Browns-Bucs game in Cleveland, walking up and down the steps of section 140 before disappearing beneath the seats. Like the Browns’ O-line opening holes for Nick Chubb, fans gave the critter lots of leeway.

“Fortunately, Pepe Le Pew didn’t get called for illegal use of glands.”

But don’t get me wrong, I love sports………