New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady has show his support for disgraced ex-teammate Antonio Brown with heart emojis on Twitter.
Brady sent the sweet expression in reply to a photo of himself and Brown that Brown posted on Instagram after he was released from the team on Friday in the wake of sexual misconduct allegations.
‘Love ya champ that was fun! #GoWinIt #DoitforMe’ wrote Brown, who had four catches for 56 yards and one touchdown in the single game he played during his 11-day tenure with the Patriots.
Brown responded to the firing with a flurry of social media posts on Twitter and Instagram, where he noted ‘just got fired on Friday’ and mused hopefully ‘the marathon continues.’
Tom Brady expressed his fondness for Brown, replying with three heart emojis to Brown’s Instagram post hours after the wide receiver was released
After Brown (left) signed with the Patriots on September 9, Brady (right) welcomed the star receiver with open arms, even inviting him to live in his Boston mansion temporarily
Brown posted this photo of himself by a private jet on Saturday, adding ‘#Iknowimspecial’
In one Instagram post on Saturday, Brown posted a photo of himself in front of a private jet, with the hashtag ‘#Iknowimspecial’.
Brown’s less than happy ending with the Patriots came after owner Robert Kraft reportedly became enraged at the revelation of text messages to one of his accusers that her lawyers called ‘threatening and intimidating.’
The billionaire owner then conferred with coach Bill Belichick, who operates as the team’s de facto general manager, and they agreed to release Brown immediately, just 11 days after signing him for $15 million, according to the Athletic.
Brown was instantly cut from the team, with the Patriots releasing a statement saying: ‘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.’
Brown, 31, only signed with the Super Bowl champions on September 9, two days after being released by the Oakland Raiders without playing a game due to his social media feud with management.
The day after signing with the Patriots, Brown was accused of rape in a lawsuit filed by 28-year-old Britney Taylor in Florida, and later of unwanted sexual advances by a second, unnamed, woman.
Britney Taylor, 28, (left) was the first to come forward to accuse Brown (right) of sexual assault and rape, filing a lawsuit the day after he signed with the Patriots
Just hours before his release on Friday, shocking text messages were revealed that Brown apparently sent to the second woman to accuse him of misconduct.
Texts from the number belonging to Brown then asked others in the group chat – which included Brown’s lawyer Darren Heitner – to ‘look into her background’ before posting pictures of her children.
A man identified in the texts as Eric B then replied ‘yes sir we will do that’ before a second respondent added ‘send me her info bro’.
In a statement on Friday, attorneys for the woman Brown threatened said: ‘The NFL and the Patriots clearly took our client’s concerns seriously.’
‘She wanted the threats and intimidation to stop and we hope that will be the case. The NFL has assured us that regardless of Antonio Brown’s roster status, it will continue to investigate all claims regarding his behavior,’ the statement continued.
The NFL said on Friday night that that Brown’s status is currently that of an unrestricted free agent, making it technically possible for another team to sign him.
The woman says she was added to a group chat by a number that Brown was using when she worked for him, before he branded her a ‘broke girl’. Also included in the chat were Brown’s lawyer and two other figures who he asked to ‘look up her background’
New England Patriots owner Robert Kraft (file photo) was rubbed the wrong way by the revelation of the intimidating text messages, and decided with Belichick to cut Brown
New England Patriots head coach Bill Belichick storms away from the podium after facing an avalanche of questions about Brown hours prior to the wide receiver’s release on Friday
‘Our office is currently investigating multiple allegations, some of which are the subject of pending litigation,’ the league said in a statement. ‘We have as yet made no findings regarding these issues.’
The NFL said that as long as Brown is a free agent, he cannot be placed on the Commissioner’s exempt list, barring him from play.
The league noted however that, if signed by a team, he could be exempted at any time depending on the investigation’s findings.
Brown had been due to receive the first $5 million of his $9 million signing bonus from the Patriots on Monday.
It is unclear whether he will still receive any of that money, though many experts interpreted the timing of the Patriots move as a way to avoid the bonus payment.
If the Patriots manage to avoid paying the signing bonus, Brown will have gone in the span of two weeks from $30 million in guaranteed money with Oakland to just $158,333 in 2019 salary for his one game with the Patriots.
In addition, he has lost lucrative sponsorship deals in the same period, including a major deal with Nike, which dropped Brown on Thursday.
Timeline of Antonio Brown’s rise and fall in the NFL
2010: The Pittsburgh Steelers draft Brown in the sixth round of the 2010 NFL Draft.
2010 season to 2018 season: With the Steelers, Brown excels, blowing draft expectations out out the water.
In Pittsburgh, he amasses more receptions and receiving yards than any other player since he entered the league.
July 18, 2018: Brown is named as the cover athlete for Madden NFL 19.
March 9, 2019: After Brown is benched for missing practice, he pressures the Steelers to trade him. The Steelers agree to trade Brown to the Oakland Raiders, who sign him for a three-year, $30 million deal.
August 3: Brown posts a picture of his heavily blistered feet on Instagram, which was later revealed to be frostbites to his feet due to not wearing proper footwear during a cryotherapy session. He misses several practices.
August 9: Brown files a grievance demanding to continue wearing his old helmet even though it had been banned. Between his helmet and his feet, Brown misses 10 out of 11 training camp practices.
September 4: Brown is fined a combined $54,000 by general manager Mike Mayock due to unexcused absences. He posts the fine letter on Instagram.
September 5: Brown has a verbal altercation with Mayock, who is white, and reportedly calls the GM a ‘cracker.’ Brown denies the report.
September 7: The Oakland Raiders release Brown.
September 9: The New England Patriots sign Brown on a one-year, $15 million deal.
September 10: Brown’s former personal trainer Britney Taylor, 28, accuses him of rape in a lawsuit filed in Florida.
September 15: In his only game with the Patriots, Brown gets four receptions for 56 yards and one touchdown in a 43-0 win over the Dolphins.
September 16: A second, unnamed, woman accuses Brown of sexual harassment in an interview with Sports Illustrated.
September 19: Nike drops Brown from a massive endorsement deal.
September 20: Reports emerge that Brown sent threatening text messages to the second accuser. Patriots coach Bill Belichick storms out of press conference after facing avalanche of questions about Brown.
September 20: Just hours after the press conference, the Patriots announce that Brown has been released from the team.