Antonio Brown landing spots: Will Cowboys, other playoff teams claim disgruntled WR off waivers?

Antonio Brown is no longer officially a Buc.

Tampa Bay released Brown on Thursday, finally ending his time with the Buccaneers. The reigning Super Bowl champs decided to cut the wide receiver after he removed his jersey, pads and jersey during Sunday’s win over the Jets and left the field.

Brown’s drama has only gotten crazier since then as he targeted team members, including Tom Brady and head coach Bruce Arians, and claimed the team ignored his ankle injury and asked him to get over it. . Tampa Bay has refuted Brown’s claim that the team covered his injury, saying he was cleared to play.

Now that Brown is no longer a Buccaneer, he is reaching the limit, which means that any team in the league can claim and attempt to sign him before the postseason with the intention of playing against him. Multiple playoff teams might be interested in taking a risk by adding you to the roster to help down the stretch.

NFL Network’s Ian Rapaport explained that no team will filter interest in claiming Brown out of the waivers because another team could jump in and catch him before the playoffs, but he noted that the timing of the release gives teams a chance to sign him and play in the postseason.

“Like, let’s say, I’m not going to pick a team, but just pick a team in the playoffs. One team wants it, well, then another team would say, ‘We don’t want this team to catch it. I’m going to claim it. Everybody would stay. completely silent on what they want before the waiver wire comes in and then we’ll find out what’s really out there, “Rapaport said. “… I would be surprised if someone claimed it because one, there is a lot there, two, has said that he plans to have an ankle surgery.”

As Rapaport said, for various reasons, Brown is unlikely to be claimed. He has a litany of problems off the field and may not even play if he decides he needs ankle surgery. But if he were claimed, what teams might be interested in taking the risk for him? Sporting News take a look.

Dallas appeared to be reaching the playoffs with a strong group of receivers, but Michael Gallup tore his ACL on Sunday, ending his season and cutting deep into the depth of the team’s receivers. The team is still led by CeeDee Lamb, Dalton Schultz, Amari Cooper and Cedrick Wilson, but Wilson is primarily a slot receiver and Schultz is a tight end, leaving Lamb and Cooper as the team’s top open threats.

Of course, signing Brown would be a gamble, but the Cowboys haven’t made it past the divisional round of the playoffs since 1995 and are desperate for a deeper run in the playoffs this time around.

Cardinals

Yes, the team that just beat the Cowboys could look to keep it out of Dallas’ hands and develop its own receiving depth. Arizona’s top receiver DeAndre Hopkins broke his MCL in Week 14. And while he could return during the playoffs, the Cardinals aren’t sure when, or even if, it will happen.

Without Hopkins on the field, the Cardinals really lack a true number one option for quarterback Kyler Murray. Christian Kirk leads the team with 939 receiving yards, but he’s mostly been a slot receiver, and AJ Green isn’t the same explosive player he used to be with the Bengals. Brown would almost immediately become Murray’s most trusted target should Arizona bring him up.

Bosses

Kansas City feels like a team that’s perennially charged on offense, but if there’s one area where it might need some extra help, it could be wide receiver. Tyreek Hill remains one of the best weapons in the league, but Bryon Pringle, Demarcus Robinson, Josh Gordon and Mecole Hardman haven’t stepped up to give Patrick Mahomes another threat he can count on.

Given the number of options Kansas City has, Brown wouldn’t feel as pressured to step up right away as he would at other destinations, but he would still be sure to become a popular target on the high-powered offense.

Packers

Antonio Brown and Aaron Rodgers playing together? That would be an interesting combination to say the least. The Packers haven’t had the same catcher injury issues that the Cowboys or Cardinals have, but they’ve been trying to go all out this year, and the depth after Davante Adams at wide receiver isn’t as strong as others. equipment.

They were rumored to be an Odell Beckham Jr. team earlier in the season, but were lost when Beckham landed in Los Angeles. Brown would have to outrun multiple teams to get to Green Bay on the waiver, but if he’s available, why not make a move for Brown now?

NFL waiver order

The order of exemption in the NFL is set in reverse order of the current league standings.

So for any of the playoff teams hoping to sign him, they’ll have to expect him to go through all the non-playoff teams first.

Here is the reverse order of sorting:

  1. Jaguars
  2. Lions
  3. Jeans
  4. Giants
  5. Jets
  6. Panthers
  7. Bears
  8. Seahawks
  9. Washington
  10. Hawks
  11. Brown
  12. Broncos
  13. Vikings
  14. Crows
  15. Dolphins
  16. Saints
  17. Steelers
  18. Colts
  19. Assailants
  20. Chargers
  21. Eagles
  22. 49ers
  23. Invoices
  24. Bengals
  25. Patriots
  26. Cardinals
  27. Cowboys
  28. Bosses
  29. Titans
  30. Rams
  31. Buccaneers
  32. Packers