AB’s lawyer calls Buc’s release a ‘surprise attack’

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TAMPA, Florida – Antonio Brown’s attorney says the Tampa Bay Buccaneers terminated the wide receiver’s contract last week because he did not show up for a doctor’s visit that he could not make, calling the move a “surprise attack” in a series of tweets.

“We were in the middle of planning an appointment with Bucs’ selected surgeon when we learned via Twitter that they terminated AB on Thursday for not having seen the same surgeon,” attorney Sean Burstyn tweeted. “… Bucs chose an arbitrary meeting time outside normal working hours early Thursday morning. They also fumbled around with an appt on Wednesday afternoon at the last minute. (Bucs’ new interest in AB’s health was a surprise. Was AB not ‘not a Buc’ Sunday evening?)”

Burstyn wrote that they were trying to reschedule the schedule, saying that the Buccaneers claim that Brown was “refuses to attend a doctor’s appointment“as a justification for his release.

“The Bucs did this because they know Coach Arians’ dismissal of AB on the field was degrading, inhuman, abusive and illegal. So they tried to cover it up using their latest dirty trick: ‘Surprise Attack’ medical treatment, which they [never] reasonably scheduled for AB to receive, “Burstyn tweeted. “This was pure gamemanship to create a pretextual termination. All Antonio did was ask to be seen at a reasonable time by a doctor with current medical records. When AB talked about his health this week, he was fired. On the field, then on Twitter. “

Brown said in a statement Wednesday that he was unable to play during Sunday’s game against the New York Jets due to an ankle injury. He said an MRI scan on Monday revealed broken bone fragments, a ligament torn from the bone and cartilage loss, and that surgery will be necessary.

Buccaneer coach Bruce Arians said Thursday that while he and Brown discussed the ankle injury during the week and that the wide receiver did not attend training on the Thursday and Friday prior to the game, he attended Saturday’s walk-through and was allowed to play. . Arians said he was not made aware of how bad Brown’s injury was during the match and that Brown’s frustration had to do with his lack of goals.

Brown said last week that he had informed the Buccaneers coaches that he could not play because of the injury, but was told “you’re done” and “get it f — out of here.” Brown then took off his jersey, threw off his gloves and undershirt in the stands and jogged off the field.

Arians said he would never ask a player to play injured.

Burstyn said he believes the Buccaneers are using Brown’s history (11 lost fights due to suspension over the past two seasons, an arrest for assaulting a moving truck driver and two public allegations of sexual assault) against him. While Brown acknowledged that he had “made mistakes” in his statement, Brown and Burstyn argue that it should not prevent him from feeling pain and saying no when he felt he was too hurt to play.

“The Bucs have used AB’s past to get out of the jam they sat down last Sunday,” Burstyn tweeted. “It’s the kind of manipulation that made Antonio write ‘I do not understand how people who publicly claim to be concerned about my mental health can do these things to me privately’.”

Comments from Brown on Friday on the “Full Send Podcast” also indicate that he had become more and more frustrated with his salary. Buccaneers general manager Jason Licht told ESPN’s Adam Schefter that Brown’s agent had recently approached him to guarantee $ 2 million of his incentives and that Tampa Bay declined.

Licht also told Schefter that the Buccaneers made two deals in New York where Brown was still after leaving Sunday’s game so they could place him on injured reserve and pay him the rest of his salary for the season. Licht said Brown never returned their text messages or phone calls, nor did he send his medical records, including the MRI that Brown had on Monday, which they requested.

According to the agreement, a team-appointed doctor must perform a physical in order for a player to be placed on an injured reserve. A player can get a second opinion, which the players’ association encourages.

Burstyn said they never received a request for medical records.

“Show me a request for medical records. We never got one,” Burstyn told ESPN, adding that the team called Wednesday and asked for an answer. “Didn’t tell us what the call was about. Said we should call back at our ‘earliest convenience’. We had an internal team discussion Thursday morning to review the options before calling back. At noon they went ahead and took the most drastic action: fired. “

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