Wide receiver Antonio Brown is eligible to make his debut with the New England Patriots on Sunday whereas the league investigates accusations of rape and sexual assault made this week in a lawsuit by a girl who as soon as labored as his coach.
Because the N.F.L. has solely simply begun wanting into the accusation, Brown was in a position to apply with the Patriots and it appeared probably he could be with the staff for the sport, on the street towards the Miami Dolphins. The Patriots, nevertheless, wouldn’t say whether or not he would play.
“I’m not going to hand out a copy of the game plan here,” Coach Bill Belichick informed reporters Friday.
The N.F.L. started wanting into the case quickly after Brown was accused in a lawsuit filed on Tuesday. But the league is not going to interview the girl who made the accusations till subsequent week on the earliest, an individual with data of the matter stated. At any time, the league might place Brown on what is called the commissioner’s exempt listing, which is a suspension with pay, whereas it investigates the accusations.
The commissioner’s exempt listing is used if a participant has been formally charged in a legal case involving against the law of sexual assault, different kinds of violence or animal abuse. But a participant who’s suspected of committing any of these crimes might be positioned on this listing if the commissioner, Roger Goodell, believes that “the circumstances and evidence warrant doing so,” in accordance to the N.F.L. Player Personnel Policy Manual.
Goodell has taken such motion in earlier instances that concerned a police investigation or when proof like a video recording surfaced, however this case arises from a lawsuit. Brown has denied the allegation and recommended he would countersue.
The potential look of Brown on the sphere towards the Dolphins could be the most recent twist in a turbulent yr for Brown, who formally joined the Patriots on Monday after requesting and being granted a launch from the Oakland Raiders. Brown, a seven-time Pro Bowler who was traded by the Steelers to the Raiders within the spring, wore out his welcome in Oakland earlier than enjoying in a single sport. He missed most of coaching camp due to a foot damage and a dispute over a helmet, after which battled his coach and normal supervisor. The Raiders reduce Brown final Saturday, and the Patriots shortly signed him.
Through his lawyer, Brown denied all of the allegations in the suit, though his lawyer acknowledged Brown had sexual contact with Taylor.
The N.F.L. has often wrestled with how to handle players’ conduct off the field.
It has been accused by women’s rights activists of not doing enough to penalize players accused or convicted of sexual abuse and domestic violence. In 2014, the league expanded its investigative unit to include former prosecutors and specialists in domestic violence. The league also said it would no longer rely exclusively on the decisions of law enforcement officers to determine whether to fine or suspend a player.
Brown, 31, agreed last weekend to a deal with the Patriots but was ineligible to play in their season-opening victory against Pittsburgh on Sunday because of the timing of his signing. His status for this week’s game had remained in doubt while the league considered its options after learning of the allegations in the lawsuit.
Brown took part in the Patriots’ practice session Friday, one of several signals that he would travel with the team and play on Sunday.
Still, Belichick made clear that even a player as talented as Brown had significant ground to make up. He noted that the West Coast offense that Brown had trained in with Oakland was far different than the one he will play in alongside Tom Brady.
“We’ve got a long way to go,” Belichick said. “Obviously he’s not familiar with our offense. The systems that he’s been in are quite different.”
“He’s working hard to pick it up,” Belichick added, “and we’re working hard to get it to him.”
Get more stuff like this
Subscribe to our mailing list and get interesting stuff and updates to your email inbox.
Thank you for subscribing.
Something went wrong.