TB43 And Mr. Big Chest's Friendship

Weird stuff.

Jim Rome
November 03, 2020 - 11:29 am
Tom Brady and Antonio Brown

USA Today

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There are some truly weird things in the world of sports, but there might not be anything weirder than Tom Brady’s relationship with Antonio Brown.

I know it feels like ancient history but remember last year when Brady was with the Patriots and they brought in Antonio Brown?

Here’s a quick recap of the events that led up to Brown joining the Patriots: Antonio Brown threatens to punch a team official in Oakland. Antonio Brown is released in Oakland. Antonio Brown signs with New England. Antonio Brown is sued for sexual assault. Antonio Brown practices with the Patriots.

And somewhere in there, Brady thought it would be a great idea to have Brown crash at his place. And then when Brady was asked about the allegations against Brown, Brady came up with this gem of a response:

“I’m just trying to show up and play football. Miami’s a good team. Things that don’t involve me, don’t involve me.”

Pretty freaking incredible to say that about a teammate who you invited to live in your house. When you invite someone to live in your house, it involves you.

Brown’s time with the Patriots ended shortly after 5pm on a Friday last September after Robert Klemko reported that Brown had sent text messages to an accuser that could be qualified as “intimidating.”

But Brown’s relationship with Brady didn’t end there. And to the surprise of exactly no one, the Bucs signed Brown. Let’s be clear about why they signed him: because Tom Brady wanted him.

Because despite all the despicable behavior, the allegations of assault, and sexual assault, and intimidating an accuser, and I could go on, but despite all of that, Brady really likes the guy. Brady really involves himself with the guy.

And yet again, he’s having Brown live with him. And yet again, the question is: why?

For who? For what?

Why can’t Antonio Brown get his own place?

Well, as Brady said on Westwood One “It’s nice to have him around. It’s a big transition for him moving across the state not knowing anyone. I’m just trying to be a good teammate and help somebody out.”

First of all, nice to have him around? Dude, have you entered his name into Google?

And then how about that second sentence: “It’s a big transition for him moving across the state not knowing anyone.”

Massive transition. Great point. I can’t imagine what it’s like to move from, checks just to make sure, Miami to Tampa. Whoa – I know elite athletes have a level of mental toughness that we mere mortals will never be able to grasp, but is there anyone anywhere, world class athlete or otherwise, who can handle the magnitude and pressure of a move from Miami to Tampa…damn, no one I know or have ever head of: you do know that’s a four hour drive, right?. And that you can’t? Just get on one road and go all the way from Miami to Tampa, right. Oh, wait, you can.

But damn, that transition is going to be crazy. Does he have to get passport for it? Learn a new language. Establish citizenship: holy crap, what an adjustment this dude is going to have to make:

Good thing he has an amazing teammate and friend in TB43 to help him out. 

The way, do you know what a good teammate is? You don’t actually have to let your teammates sleep in your house. You can be a good teammate and a good friend without having this dude bunk in with you and your family. 

If I thought much of Tom Brady as a leader and a standup guy, I’d say, why are you getting involved in Antonio Brown? Why are you bringing a guy with his history of allegations of sexual assault into your locker room and into your home?

But I don’t think much of Brady as a leader and a standup guy. And I know why he’s doing it. Because he wants to win. He’s not doing this to help a guy out. He’s not doing it because it’s the right thing to do. He’s’ doing it because he wants a ring. And he wants to shove it Bill Belichick’s arse. 

If Antonio Brown ran a 6 second forty and had hands of stone, would Tom Brady be bringing him in and “just trying to be a good teammate and help somebody out”? If Antonio Brown was out of shape, would Tom Brady be trying to help him make that really difficult transition from Miami to Tampa? Hell. No.  

So let me repeat this: he’s not doing this to help a guy out. He’s doing this because he wants to win, at any cost. And because he can. Because he knows that if something bad happens with Brown, he can just pretend that it doesn’t involve him.  Just like he tried to do the first time he tried to pull this off. 

I hope nothing more goes wrong with Brown. I hope he’s changed and that he doesn’t continue to harm people in the ways that he allegedly has in the past.

But you know if he does, the moment that happens, Tom Brady will disavow Antonio Brown in a heartbeat. You know, because that’s what a good teammate does. Antonio who? Never heard of him. Antonio Brown? That sounds vaguely familiar, but I can’t quite put my finger on it.

He’ll just smile and give you that creepy laugh. And claim that it doesn’t involve him. Again. But it does involve him. It did last year and it does again this year. And it’s just as weird now as it was then. But even less surprising.