Antonio Brown’s agent, Drew Rosenhaus, told ESPN on Wednesday that he and his client were expecting the “possibility” that the wide receiver would be accused of rape, as quoted via Twitter by Boston Globe reporter Christopher Price. The admission by Rosenhaus has raised new questions about whether New England Patriots officials, including owner Robert Kraft and head coach Bill Belichick, knew of the rape accusations against Brown when they signed him on Saturday to a one-year contract that could see Brown pocket $15 million.
As The Inquisitr has reported, Brown was accused Friday in a lawsuit filed by his former physical trainer and college classmate Britney Taylor of raping and sexually assaulting her on three occasions in 2017. Brown’s attorney said in a statement that the seven-time Pro Bowl wide receiver denies “each and every” allegation in Taylor’s lawsuit. Brown supposedly plans to file a countersuit accusing Taylor of “civil extortion,” according to a separate report cited by The Inquisitr.
Asked whether the Patriots knew about the anticipated allegations against Brown, Rosenhaus told ESPN that he’s “not going to get into it,” as quoted by Price.
“If…Patriots didn’t ask if there were any possible surprises in store, that’s a lack of due diligence,” veteran Boston football reporter Tom E. Curran wrote on his own Twitter account. But Curran also raised the possibility that the Wednesday statements by Brown’s agent show “a lack of disclosure on Rosenhaus’ part if he was asked and didn’t reveal.”
New England Patriots quarterback Tom Brady was asked about the allegations against Brown on Wednesday but declined to give a direct answer.
Tom Brady on the Antonio Brown situation – "Things that don't involve me, don't involve me" pic.twitter.com/R5jAiYiu1o
— Patriots on NBCSB (@NBCSPatriots) September 11, 2019
Belichick said that the Patriots had “looked into the situation,” and added that the team is “taking it very seriously,” according to NBC Sports Boston via Twitter.
As The Inquisitr reported on Wednesday, prosecutors in Allegheny County, Pennsylvania, are now reportedly investigating one of Taylor’s rape allegations against Brown, an incident which she says took place at Brown’s home in Pittsburgh. Brown purchased this home after the Steelers picked him in the sixth round of the 2010 NFL Draft.
But in a statement, the Allegheny district attorney said that no one had ever contacted his office about the 2017 rape incident alleged in Taylor’s lawsuit.
Brown now faces possible suspension, as The Inquisitr reported, though according to a Washington Post report, it may be more likely that the NFL places the 31-year-old receiver on the league’s “paid exempt” list. This means that Brown could continue to collect his salary, but would be ineligible to take the field for the Patriots or any other NFL team.
The Washington Post found no evidence that Brown possessed a criminal record, and none of the allegations made by Taylor in the lawsuit appear to have been reported to law enforcement. The absence of police reports is not unusual in rape incidents, the majority of which remain unreported.