Written By Edward Sutelan
Antonio Brown is hoping to return to the NFL, but until then, he'll focus on his music.
In an interview with Complex, Brown talked about his shirtless exit during the Buccaneers' Jan. 2 win against the Jets that led to his release, and what he has been doing since his exit from the NFL.
Brown said "a couple" teams have called him and that he wants an "opportunity to play again." In the meantime, he said, he is working on releasing an album, "Himmothy 2," his second album after "Himmothy," which was released under his stage name, aB.
"I’m a football player, man. I’m a professional athlete. Let’s not get that twisted," Brown told Complex. "That’s my main thing. But right now, what I do with music is what I do when I’m not playing. So once I’m able to get my (ankle) surgery and get cleaned up, hopefully the album will already be out."
Brown walked off the field during the third quarter against the Jets, taking his jersey, pads and undershirt off before walking into the tunnel. The Buccaneers released him Jan. 6.
Brown claimed he had told coach Bruce Arians he couldn't continue to play because of his ankle injury, and that Arians wanted him to play through it. The Buccaneers have said Brown was cleared by the medical staff to play against the Jets, and Arians denied that Brown was playing through an injury.
The receiver told Complex the way his tenure with Tampa Bay was "not a good feeling," but he also believes he "represented myself the right way."
"I could have handled my emotions better from walking off the field and making a distraction, but in that moment, I just didn’t want to be a part of it no more," Brown said. "You’re sacrificing your health to play with someone, and they don’t really respect that, so to me that was a smack in the face.
"I’m just glad I did what my heart said in the moment. I could have handled it better, but I think you’ve got to stand up for yourself."
Since leaving MetLife Stadium, Brown has been living it up in Los Angeles. He has been spotted hanging out with Kanye West, Madonna and Floyd Mayweather.
Brown said that he has partnered with West on the Donda sports brand and hinted that he and West might have been involved in making music together, saying that "we've got some stuff coming," before adding that both West's "Donda 2" and his "Himmothy 2" are both due to be released soon.
"I've got a new job, it's called living. That's our only job in the world, is just to live," Brown said. "It's not about the things that we take as so serious."
Brown said his hope is to go platinum and be the "first athlete that people really respect for the craft, for the music." He added that he wants to be seen at the California music festival Rolling Loud.
"Hopefully you see with my shirt off everywhere, getting people excited," Brown said.