As much as it may pain Patriots owner Robert Kraft to open his wallet for Antonio Brown, he may not have much choice. The Patriots attempted to void as much of Brown's contract as they could when the cut him last week. But they may not be allowed to withhold everything.
According to a report from Yahoo! Sports, sources told the publication that the Patriots can't just void Brown's $9 million signing bonus because they cut him before a certain point.
Brown was cut last Friday following reports that he sent "menacing" text messages to a sexual assault accuser. He will be filing a grievance against the Patriots for not giving him his bonus.
But the terms of the Collective Bargaining Agreement (CBA) don't allow teams to void a contract for bad behavior. Only failing to report or being unavailable for a variety of reasons can void the contract.
Brown may have been a distraction, but he was still available to play and practice. He had done so in the week leading up to his firing.
However, if Brown failed to tell the Patriots about the civil suit against him, that may change the narrative entirely. But we may never know what the Patriots did or didn't know when they signed Brown hours after his equally-controversial release from the Oakland Raiders.
As a result, the Patriots may be forced to pay Antonio Brown after all.
After being cut, Brown did not go quietly into the night. He salted the earth behind him by taking shots at Kraft, Ben Roethlisberger and Shannon Sharpe among others.
Suffice it to say, the Patriots owner is probably not looking forward to having to cut Brown any checks anytime soon.