Former Pittsburgh Steelers wide receiver Antonio Brown now says he will play for the indoor football team that he owns.
Brown told WNYT-TV in Albany that he will play during an upcoming Albany Empire home game on May 27 or June 17. Brown said that he hoped him playing would increase ticket sales for the team, which has averaged about 2,500 fans per game at MVP Arena, which seats over 13,000.
The former Steelers All-Pro became a team owner in March, purchasing a stake in the Albany Empire, which plays in the National Arena League. His father, “Touchdown” Eddie Brown, who was a legend for the team when it played in the now-defunct Arena Football League, is the team’s general manager.
Brown’s tenure as a team owner has been checkered. He said in April that he was beginning to see things differently as an owner than he did as a player.
“As an owner I finally see now why it’s important to make everyone know no one is bigger then the Team! As a player I always thought opposite!” Brown tweeted.
He was amusingly kicked off the field by security at one of his own games in April. Then later that month, the Albany Times Union reported that there were major issues with the team, including failure to pay players, the head coach quitting over lack of pay, suspensions, players being locked out of team hotels for non-payment and further legal entanglements.
Brown has also faced warrants for his arrest in Miami-Dade and Hillsborough counties in Florida over unpaid child support.
Brown played for the Steelers from 2010-18, and was one of the most prolific wide receivers in team history. He racked up 11,207 yards and 74 touchdowns in his nine seasons, while being selected to seven Pro Bowls and five All-Pro teams.
He last played in the NFL with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in 2021. Brown won a Super Bowl with the Bucs after the 2020 season, but ended his tenure with the team, and to this point the NFL, when he quit on the team in the middle of a game against the New York Jets on Jan. 2, 2022.
This will be his first game since that incident, if he plays as he says he intends to.