Antonio Brown suspension: How long will Buccaneers WR be sidelined for ‘misrepresenting’ COVID vaccination status?
Two players on the Buccaneers’ roster, Antonio Brown and Mike Edwards, were suspended for three games after it was found that they misrepresented their immunization status.
The news comes nearly three weeks after Brown’s former chef, Steven Ruiz, accused Brown of obtaining fake vaccination cards to circumvent the NFL’s COVID rules. Brown’s attorney resisted saying that Brown was vaccinated.
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Coach Bruce Arians announced in early September that all Buccaneers players had been vaccinated, but with this announcement, that claim is now false. The Buccaneers released a statement following Chef Brown’s accusations, saying they had carefully checked all vaccination cards at the start of the season and had found no “abnormalities”.
So because Brown lied about his immunization status through a fake immunization card, he will miss the next three games. Brown will be eligible to return in Week 16 when the Buccaneers play the Panthers. By missing three games, Brown could lose about $183,000 in wages.
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NFL statement on Antonio Brown’s suspension
The NFL released a statement regarding the suspensions of Brown and Edwards, along with free agent John Franklin III, who also misrepresented his immunization status.
“The health and safety of our players and staff is our top priority. Protocols were developed in conjunction with our respective experts to ensure that we are training and playing. football as safely as possible during the ongoing pandemic. NFL-NFLPA together reinforces their commitment and further emphasizes the importance of strict adherence to protocols to protect the well-being of their players. everyone involved with the NFL,” said the NFL-NFLPA statement released Thursday afternoon.
NFL Officially Suspended #Bucs WR Antonio Brown and Safety Mike Edwards for the next three games for violating NFL-NFLPA COVID protocol.
WR freelance worker John Franklin was also suspended. pic.twitter.com/4wxsJYKFdC
– Dov Kleiman (@NFL_DovKleiman) December 2, 2021
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Buccaneers’ reaction to Antonio Brown’s suspension
Additionally, the Buccaneers released a new statement on Thursday regarding Brown and Edwards’ suspension.
“We appreciate the Federation’s prompt handling of this matter and recognize the importance of established health and safety protocols. We will continue to roll out all COVID- 19 of the federation.”
Coincidentally, both Brown and Edwards are dealing with injuries at this point. On Wednesday, it was announced that Brown is likely to miss two weeks because of an ankle injury. Edwards is dealing with a knee injury.