TAMPA, Fla. — Tom Brady’s 93-yard game-winning touchdown drive in the final moments of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers’ win Sunday against the New York Jets is almost an after-thought to wide receiver Antonio Brown’s third-quarter incident.
With Tampa Bay trailing 24-10, Brown took off his jersey and equipment and jogged off the field in the middle of the game, resulting in his dismissal from the team.
"He is no longer a Buc,” Head coach Bruce Arians said after the game. “That’s the end of the story. Let's talk about the guys that went out and won the game.”
Brown last just over a year in Tampa Bay before storming out of the stadium and off the Bucs’ roster after refusing to go in the game.
A day later, Arians said he still doesn't know why Brown would not take the field.
Could it have been injury-related? Brown was listed as questionable for Sunday’s game with an ankle injury after having not practiced Thursday or Friday.
“He was cleared to play last week. He played good. Cleared to play this week,” Arians said.
Arians declined to share any more details of what he said that Brown objected to causing the veteran wide receiver to disrobe and leave the field.
“You'd have to ask him, brother. I don't have a clue,” Arians said. “It was obvious what happened. He left the field and that was it.”
Arians had expressed genuine care for Brown making the final decision to dismiss him a difficult one.
“It was very hard. I wish him well,” Arians said. “If he needs help, get some. It's very hard because I do care about him.”