Antonio Brown responds to speculation about his mental health

By , Audacy Sports

Former Buccaneers wide receiver Antonio Brown has reportedly denied having any mental health issues.

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The comments, which were made during a podcast appearance, come just a couple weeks after Brown's infamous midgame exit from Tampa's sideline, and his subsequent release.

Brown, who has seemed to wear out his welcome with each of his four former NFL teams, said his mental health is unfairly questioned when "something happens bad," and he again suggested that his falling out with the Bucs was rooted in his refusal to play injured.

“Why every time something happens bad, or how someone reacts, ‘Aw, he’s crazy, there’s something wrong with his mental health,'” Brown said on the "I Am Athlete" podcast, according to TMZ Sports.

“There’s nothing wrong with my mental health," he continued. "Someone told me to get the f–k out of here. I’m not passive-aggressive."

Brown was referring to head coach Bruce Arians, who Brown has previously claimed cursed him out on the sidelines when Brown declined to re-enter the game during the Buccaneers' win over the Jets at MetLife Stadium in Week 17.

“An NFL Super Bowl team coach told a guy on the team who’s playing hurt ‘get the f–k out of here,'” Brown added, per TMZ.

Arians, for his part, has claimed that Brown was sulking over his relative lack of targets in the Jets game, and had thrown a tantrum over it during halftime in the locker room.

Brown later suggested he felt disrespected over being asked to play hurt -- he'd previously missed several weeks with a nagging ankle injury and while serving a suspension for the fake vax card -- while the Bucs were declining to sweeten his team-friendly, one-year "prove it" deal.

Brown's checkered history includes allegations of sexual assault, submitting a fake vaccination card to the NFL, and roughing up a moving service truck driver, among many others.

The Bucs added Brown last season in late October, a key midseason addition that proved crucial to their Super Bowl run. At the time, quarterback Tom Brady seemed to overrule Arians in bringing Brown aboard. Arians had previously ruled out signing Brown, saying that he wouldn't be a good fit in the locker room.

Arians backtracked after the signing was completed, saying that Brown was on zero-strike policy. The four-time All-Pro seemed to fit in well with the Bucs during their Super Bowl run, with Arians later touting him as a "model citizen."

After Brown's release, Brady was among those suggesting his former top target was dealing with mental health issues.

"We've obviously been teammates, and I would just say I love him, I care about him, and I have a lot of compassion," Brady said.

Brown didn't seem to appreciate the implication, later suggesting that Brady hadn't gone to bat for him to secure a more lucrative contract.

“If Tom Brady’s my boy, how come I’m playing for an earn-it salary?” he said. “Gronkowski is his boy, right? How much does he get paid? So why is AB on a prove-it deal? Who’s better than me over there? Let’s be real. Let’s be honest: Who is the best guy over there? Playing football, receiver-wise, who is the guy who gets it popping?"

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Featured Image Photo Credit: USA Today