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TAMPA, Fla. — Buccaneers coach Bruce Arians said Monday that he has not yet decided about the future of wide receiver Antonio Brown, whose three-game suspension is set to end after this week.
An NFL investigation determined that Brown, safety Mike Edwards and wide receiver John Franklin III, who is no longer with the team, produced fake vaccination cards, which is not only against NFL rules but also a federal crime.
“I haven’t made that determination yet, but we’ll see how it goes,” Arians said of Brown, who, under NFL rules, would be eligible to return to practice next week to play in the Bucs’ Week 16 game at the Carolina Panthers.
When Brown’s suspension was announced by the league, Arians said he would not comment on his future with the team and the Bucs would treat him and Edwards as if they were injured players. Both players have been working out away from team facilities, although Brown recently posted undated video of himself standing inside Raymond James Stadium for a photoshoot, meaning, for all intents and purposes, he intends to remain with the Buccaneers. But that decision hasn’t been made.
Arians had told Brown when he first signed with the team, “there will be no second chances,” and that was after Brown had already been suspended by the NFL for eight games for violating the league’s personal conduct policy after he allegedly assaulted a delivery truck driver. Brown was also the subject of a civil lawsuit by his former trainer Britney Taylor, alleging sexual assault. The two settled out of court in April of 2021.
Several sources in the building have said that Brown has been a “model citizen” during his time with the team and has benefited from being with Tom Brady. The quarterback has gone out of his way to support Brown but would not comment specifically on his suspension.
Arians previously expressed his disappointment over the players’ decisions.
“We’ll talk as an organization,” Arians said. “It’s coming up soon. When we know, we’ll let everybody know.”