The star receiver has once again left the team, still steaming over the NFL’s decision to deny him the use of his old helmet. Brown had rejoined the team earlier last week, but now GM Mike Mayock is putting his foot down and delivered a message to the All-Pro that their patience is wearing thin.
“You all know that AB is not here today, right?” Mayock said in a Sunday news conference. “So, here’s the bottom line: He’s upset about the helmet issue. We have supported that, we can appreciate that. But at this point, we’ve pretty much exhausted all avenues of relief.
“So, from our perspective, it’s time for him to be all-in or all-out, OK? So, we’re hoping he’s back soon. We’ve got 89 guys busting their tails, we are really excited about where this franchise is going and we hope AB’s going to be a big part of it, starting Week 1 against Denver. End of story. No questions, OK? Just wanted you guys to know where we were. Fair?”
Brown is attempting to wear his Schutt AiR Advantage helmet, which is no longer certified by NOCSAE (National Operating Committee on Standards for Athletic Equipment) because it will not certify any helmet older than 10 years old. Brown filed a grievance and the NFL won, but he was hoping to exploit a loophole that if he found another Schutt AiR Advantage helmet less than 10 years old, he would be allowed to wear it.
The NFL conducted a safety test on Saturday on a helmet Brown had found, and informed him it had failed, thus closing the loophole and ticking off Brown. The Raiders receiver claimed the NFL was being “super prejudice” in a tweet Saturday night.
Brown’s agent, Drew Rosenhaus, responded to Mayock’s comments Sunday night and took exception to the claim that all avenues had been exhausted.
“There’s no doubt it’s still an ongoing process,” Rosenhaus told South Florida’s 7 Sports Extra. “We are trying to work with the team and the league and the union to come up with a solution. We haven’t figured it out yet. To say that AB is upset about the decision to not let him wear his helmet is accurate, but we’re still processing it and figuring it out. I wouldn’t make too much about him not being there today, as much as we’re still trying to come up with a solution that works for everyone.”