Being one of the biggest stars in the NFL has it’s perks and downsides, one of them being the media. Before the start of Mini Camps Antonio Brown spoke to the media about his personal freedom and how the paint the narrative of him. When Brown had missed voluntary workouts, the media stated it was because “He didn’t want to throw with the rookie quarterbacks” and one might think that was true due to the fact that Ben Roethlisberger also was not there during that time. During his interview with the press before minicamp Brown states, “It’s not even serious. It’s not even mandatory. It’s volunteer. You guys create a story about how I don’t want to throw with rookie quarterbacks. It’s all about you guys making people a marked man when it’s not even like that.” When in reality the real reason he missed OTA’s was due the fact he “needed little personal time for myself to get my mind right. The game requires a lot of mental happiness, the older you get the more you think about what is important.”
Antonio Brown may or may not be going through a lot right now or even may be on journey to get his mind right as he has stated. It seemed more prominent that there was something going on with Brown, the last couple weeks. From the instagram posts about Bruce Arians, to his tweets talking about wanting to vent.
The world we live in today anybody can write about you; say anything they want about you ! Then you suppose to let it slide ! Don’t say nothing at all ! Play the roll right !!
— AB (@AB84) June 1, 2018
We forget that sometimes superstars who live their lives under the spotlight feel trapped or don’t seem to be human, but they are, and that’s where the media seems to take advantage and try to make the best seem at fault. “That’s the pressure of being a professional athlete. Everyday scrutiny, everyday pressure. It’s hard to be free,” Brown stated when speaking on the media attention. Antonio Brown also states “I am constantly under pressure. Can’t go anywhere and work out by myself, fans meet me at the field. Can’t do anything normal. You guys write about me every day and my mom and kids see it so we have to deal with these types of things and I start to think … am I really free?”
So when do we start holding the media accountable for how they portray certain players? Or when do we start holding the NFL accountable for allowing players to be more expressive rather than get penalized for anything they do that the NFL doesn’t like?Players are humans too, and sometimes the spotlight is a hard cross to bear.