Raiders coach Jon Gruden isn’t afraid of the drama that comes along with star wide receiver Antonio Brown.
During his pre-training camp press conference, Gruden laughed at the fact Brown arrived in a hot-air balloon and then indicated he’s prepared for the drama that the star brings to a team.
“I expect a lot more drama from No. 84. I really do,” Gruden told reporters Friday. “He’s a fun guy to be around, man. I expected a little more than a hot-air balloon. I thought he might jump out of an airplane and parachute himself in. He’s going to add a lot of life to this organization at a position where obviously we need some explosive plays.”
— Oakland Raiders (@Raiders) July 26, 2019
Brown has become known for his fiery personality and made headlines last season as he forced his way out of Pittsburgh after nine seasons with the team. The Steelers faced endless drama last year with tension growing between Brown and quarterback Ben Roethlisberger.
Gruden, however, said he loves everything he’s seen so far from the 31-year-old wideout.
“I told Antonio to try not to yell at [quarterback Derek Carr], yell at me when you have a problem,” Gruden explained. “Then he started yelling at me, and I said, ‘Don’t yell at me, yell at [Greg Olson] he’s the offensive coordinator.'”
Oakland general manager Mike Mayock also praised Brown, crediting the receiver for how he’s changed the dynamic of the team.
“I can just tell you that at practice when he catches a quick slant and gets vertical and goes, it’s rare to see grown men in the NFL look at each other and just start giggling and laughing,” Mayock said. “And it happens almost every day in practice.
“He just does something and grown men who have been around the league for years just look at each other — and I think what it also does is the young guys get to see how an All-Pro, potential Hall of Famer actually practices on a daily basis. And if you’re a young guy and you look at that, you better understand what it takes.”