First Call: Antonio Brown comically addresses foot issue on ‘Hard Knocks’ |
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First Call: Antonio Brown comically addresses foot issue on ‘Hard Knocks’

Tim Benz
Oakland Raiders wide receiver Antonio Brown speaks to reporters after NFL football practice at the team’s headquarters in Alameda, Calif., Tuesday, May 28, 2019.

For those hoping that the second episode of HBO’s “Hard Knocks” would address Antonio Brown’s foot issue and his concern over his helmet, it did.

Sort of.

About six minutes into the episode, the former Pittsburgh Steelers star shows the cameras his disgusting, cryogenically burned feet.

The Oakland Raiders wide receiver describes his feet as “getting circumcised” and hopes this means that his “feet are born again and that he can run faster.”

I’m no podiatrist, but I don’t think it works that way.

Brown then goes into detail about how he was on vacation in Paris and “tried cold therapy” to help his body recover when he started to feel a burning sensation in his feet.

He said there was severe swelling to the point where he called a doctor who used a scalpel, “then used scissors the next day to let it leak all out.”

He described his feet as feeling like “a big patch of open whoopie cushion.”

Whatever that means.

What Brown didn’t explain or describe is how his feet managed to get burned in the first place. At no point did he — or coach Jon Gruden or GM Mike Mayock or the trainers — say whether he forgot to wear protective footwear, or whether he wore wet socks and wasn’t supposed to do so.

Or whether he was ever warned of those dangers in the first place.

Or whether he stayed in the cryo chamber too long.

None of that is clarified.

Later in the episode, Brown’s debate with the league over his helmet is addressed, but only via a clip of a NFL Network report about it and Gruden’s postgame soundbite from Saturday claiming that the team supports Brown.

Gruden describes himself as someone “playing the Masters with one golf ball,” then he bemoans losing the golf ball.

“Has anyone seen my friend Antonio Brown?” Gruden says in a meeting room to no one in particular. “He’s good, man. I wish he was here.”

Some of the behind-the-scenes footage shows Gruden becoming — at various points — bemused, exasperated, and frustrated by his absence.

In a broadcast meeting, Gruden admits to Brent Musburger, Raiders radio play-by-play guy, that he is getting “concerned” by the practice time lost, claiming, “Time spent is value received.”

And Brown isn’t a part of that right now.

Get used to it, Chucky. Get used to it.

Tim Benz is a Tribune-Review staff writer. You can contact Tim at [email protected] or via Twitter. All tweets could be reposted. All emails are subject to publication unless specified otherwise.

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