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Tuesday, May 21, 2024

Albany Empire Coaches, Players Plan Lawsuit Against Antonio Brown

  • Players and coaches plan to sue Brown over game checks that were pulled from their bank accounts.
  • The National Arena League kicked out the Empire after Brown allegedly failed to pay $21,000 in ownership fees.
Antonio Brown allegedly owes $21,000 in ownership fees to the National Arena League.
Credit: Vincent Carchietta-USA TODAY Sports

Albany Empire players and coaches are planning to file a class action lawsuit against team owner and former NFL player Antonio Brown after paychecks were removed from their bank accounts.

The National Arena League terminated membership of the Empire on June 15, six days after they played their last game against the Orlando Predators. Brown allegedly owes the NAL $21,000 in unpaid assessment fees, leading to his team’s midseason dismissal. 

Players and coaches were originally paid for the Orlando game, but noticed a few days later that their paychecks had been deducted from their bank accounts. Players are owed $500 and up for their final game, Empire head coach Moe Leggett told the Albany Times Union.

“I feel like [Brown] does stuff for social media and to sell his songs. I think it’s just what he does,” Empire wide receiver Fabian Guerra said, per the Times Union. “That’s the type of guy he is. No one trusts him anymore. I see it hard for him to get any future deals going because of how he is as a person.”

Brown, 34, played in the NFL for 12 seasons and earned roughly $80 million in career salary. His last game came as a member of the Tampa Bay Buccaneers in Week 17 of the 2021 NFL season, when he infamously stripped his uniform and left the field in the middle of the third quarter. 

Brown assumed majority ownership of the Albany Empire in April. He had ties to the city through his father, ‘Touchdown’ Eddie Brown, who played for the Arena Football League’s Albany Firebirds from 1994 to 2000 and is a member of the Arena Football Hall of Fame.

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