Is it time to walk away i done ✅ everything in the game ?!!— AB (@AB84) July 20, 2020
While Brown has not filed official retirement paperwork with the league, he feels the risk would be too great for him to make a return to the NFL and that his journey is now complete.
at this point the risk is greater than the reward thank you everyone who been part of this journey i sincerely thank you for everything! life goes on 84!— AB (@AB84) July 20, 2020
Although Brown was not currently on an NFL roster, most likely since he was bound to be placed in the commissioner’s exempt list upon his return to the league, Brown felt the need to make the general public aware he is no longer actively pursuing another chance at stardom. Exactly what pushed Brown to make this statement at this time is anybody’s guess, but the fact the NFL and its players have been drawing quite a bit of attention lately may possibly be a factor.
According to ESPN’s Jeremy Fowler, Brown may have another reason for making the statement.
A source said Antonio Brown recently got close to settling his case with Britney Taylor and scheduled a mediation but then backed out of it. That's the second time he's gotten close to settling, then publicly hinted at retirement shortly thereafter.— Jeremy Fowler (@JFowlerESPN) July 20, 2020
Brown also stated he had nothing else to prove by saying “Mission complete.”
I came i saw i conquered mission complete Call God— AB (@AB84) July 20, 2020
There is no doubt to the amazing production Brown experienced on his time with the Steelers. In his nine seasons, he notched over 11,000 receiving yards and 74 regular-season touchdown catches. Add in his seven Pro-Bowls and four straight first team All-Pro selections and Brown’s resume speaks for itself. Unfortunately, his last moments in Pittsburgh saw him miss the Steelers Week 17 matchup against the Cincinnati Bengals in 2018 as the team needed a victory to have a chance at the playoffs.
After demanding a trade, Brown was sent to the Oakland Raiders for third and fifth-round selections in the 2019 draft. Failing to play in a single game before forcing his release from the Raiders, Brown landed with the New England Patriots as a free agent in which he played one game where he had four receptions for 56 yards and a touchdown. Brown was subsequently released after allegations of sexual misconduct were brought to light.
After assault charges were filed against him in 2019, it appeared Brown may have been finally getting the professional help he needed in order to get his life back together. It appears at this time, that life will not include any more years playing in the NFL.
If a lot of this is sounding familiar, it’s because last September and Antonio Brown claimed he was done playing in the NFL.
Will not be playing in the @NFL anymore these owners can cancel deals do whatever they want at anytime we will see if the @NFLPA hold them accountable sad they can just void guarantees anytime going on 40m 2 months will see if they pay up !— AB (@AB84) September 22, 2019
So what was the difference this time? Is Brown truly finished with his NFL career, or was he simply just getting his name back out in the news again?
The only true test to know if Brown is really done in the NFL would be for a team to inquire about have services. Perhaps we’ll never know.