Report: Antonio Brown and Accuser Were 'in Discussions,' Patriots Were Unaware

Andy Hart
September 12, 2019 - 9:50 pm

According to ESPN, newly-signed Patriots wide receiver Antonio Brown and his former trainer, Britney Taylor, “were in discussions over the past few months, but agreed their communication would remain confidential until the filing of Taylor's civil sexual assault lawsuit,” which occurred on Tuesday.

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ESPN cited multiple sources, and indicated that the confidential discussions could explain why neither the Raiders, Brown’s team up until last weekend, nor the Patriots might have been aware of the impending lawsuit.

ESPN also speculated that the discussions could have revolved around a possible settlement.

Patriots head coach Bill Belichick would not answer questions as to whether New England was aware of the potential sexual assault allegations and lawsuit prior to signing Brown, though he did say on Wednesday “we’re taking it very seriously all the way through the organization. I’m sure there are questions, but I’m not going to get into any discussion about that.”

The NFL is investigating the allegations and will reportedly meet with Taylor next week. Brown is also “expected to meet with the league at some point” according to ESPN.

Brown is accused of two incidents of sexual assault and another instance of forcible rape. He has denied the allegations and maintains that his relationship with Taylor was consensual.

The Patriots had signed Brown on Saturday to a contract with $10 million in guaranteed money after he demanded and was granted his release from the Oakland Raiders. New England was reportedly "caught by surprise" by the lawsuit.

It is still unclear if Brown will play on Sunday for the Patriots.