By JIMMY GOLEN
FOXBOROUGH, Mass. (AP) — Antonio Brown was released by the Patriots on Friday after a second woman accused him of sexual misconduct. New England is the third team in seven months to have tired of the receiver’s conduct.
The defending Super Bowl champions announced the move in a statement emailed to reporters, three minutes after Brown posted on Twitter: “Thank you for the opportunity @Patriots #GoWinIt.”
Brown has been accused of rape in a lawsuit by a former trainer. He also faces allegations that he exposed himself to an artist he hired to paint a mural at his home. He has denied the accusations.
Patriots coach Bill Belichick and quarterback Tom Brady both declined to comment on Brown — one of the NFL’s most prolific receivers for a decade — during their scheduled media availability Friday. Belichick said during the morning that the team was looking into “some things,” then cut off his news conference when reporters continued to ask about Brown.
In the email attributed to “a Patriots spokesperson,” the team said: “We appreciate the hard work of many people over the past 11 days, but we feel that it is best to move in a different direction at this time.”
Earlier this week, Nike cut ties with the receiver, saying in an email, “Antonio Brown is not a Nike athlete.”
The Patriots signed Brown this month hours after he was released by Oakland. He was traded to the Raiders after wearing out his welcome with the Pittsburgh Steelers, where he was a four-time All-Pro in nine seasons.