What led to Antonio Brown's sideline tantrum? Reported details emerge


It's not often you see an NFL wide receiver run off the field shirtless in the middle of a game while his team is on offense.

So, what caused Antonio Brown to exhibit some of the strangest on-field behavior we've seen in recent years?

NFL Media's Ian Rapoport shared a bit more detail Monday morning about the sideline spat between Brown and Tampa Bay Buccaneers head coach Bruce Arians in the third quarter of Sunday's game against the New York Jets that led to Brown's dismissal from the team.

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"Midway through the game yesterday, Bruce Arians and the offensive staff told Antonio Brown to go into the game. They believed that he was healthy," Rapoport said on NFL Network's "Good Morning Football." "Antonio Brown did not believe he was healthy. He had been battling an ankle injury for the last several weeks."

" ... "What he told the staff, from what I understand, is that he was not going into the game because, in his mind, he did not feel he was healthy.

"The response then from the offensive coaches and from Bruce Arians was, 'If you are not gonna go into the game when we tell you to go into the game, then you cannot be here.' At that point, they threw him off the sidelines and then cut him from the team."

Arians told NBC Sports' Peter King after the game he was "very" angry with Brown, who began stripping off his pads after his back-and-forth with Arians. Wide receiver Mike Evans tried to intervene, but Brown "had that look in his eye that I haven’t seen for a long time," Arians told King.

Arians spent two seasons with Brown as his offensive coordinator on the Pittsburgh Steelers and welcomed the troubled wide receiver to Tampa Bay in October 2020 while Brown was serving an eight-game suspension for repeated violations of the NFL's personal conduct policy.

It appears Brown is done with the Bucs, though: The wideout reportedly got his own ride out of MetLife Stadium, while Arians insisted after the game -- a 28-24 Bucs comeback victory -- that Brown is no longer part of the team.

"I hope he can get fixed," Arians added to King.

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