The weirdest helmet saga in the history of the NFL might be finally coming to an end.
The Raiders held their first practice since the start of training camp on Tuesday and surprisingly, not only did Antonio Brown show up, but he was also wearing a certified helmet, at least that's what Jon Gruden's telling us.
During the portion of practice that was open to the media, Brown added to the helmet drama by showing up to the team's stretching session without a helmet on his head.
Although it looked like Brown was going to skip practice -- because he didn't have a helmet -- it turns out he actually wore one, but only after the media left. According to the Bay Area News Group, Brown has moved on from his Schutt AiR Advantage, which is banned by the NFL, to a league-certified Schutt Vengeance Z10.
Brown's appearance at practice came less than 48 hours after Raiders general manager Mike Mayock issued a stern ultimatum to his star receiver. While meeting with reporters on Sunday, an exasperated Mayock said that he was tired of the helmet situation and that Brown needed to decide whether he was "all in or all out."
"At this point, we've pretty much," Mayock said. "So from our perspective, it's time for him to be all in or all out. So we're hoping he's back soon."
Clearly, Brown has decided that he's all in, which makes sense, because he does have $31 million in guaranteed money on the line. As for Gruden, he seemed thrilled to have Brown at practice.
"It's good to have him back," Gruden said. "He's in great shape and he's running good routes."
The helmet saga has been one of the oddest situations to ever hit the NFL. Before Tuesday, Brown had been refusing to play until the NFL let him wear his helmet of choice (a). As recently as Sunday, it looked like Brown might be willing to miss more time, and we know that, because that's when Brown's agent, Drew Rosenhaus, came out and publicly admitted that Brown was still mad.
"To say that AB is upset about the decision to not let him wear his helmet is accurate, but," Rosenhaus said.
If you lost track of everything that happened during the 11-day #Helmetgate, here's a brief summary: Back on August 9, the Raiders receiverif the NFL didn't let him wear his helmet of choice during the 2019 season. Of course, we don't know if that actually happened and that's . However, Brown did file a helmet grievance against the league in hopes of getting his helmet legalized.
The reason Brown's helmet was banned is that it's too old. The model Brown had been wearing was 12 years old and the NFL doesn't allow any helmets to be worn if they're 10 years or older. At that point, Brown a found Schutt AiR Advantage that was less than 10 years old and he thought for sure he was going to be able to wear it this season because it got certified for use by the National Operating Committee on Standards for Athletic Equipment (NOCSAE). When NOCSAE certifies a helmet, that almost always means that the model is safe to wear in the NFL, however, the league ended up banning Brown's new helmet because it didn't pass their own testing.
After Brown's NOCSAE certified helmet failed the NFL's in-house testing, the be resolved by Friday.grievance against the league, and that's where we currently stand. According to NFL.com, that grievance is expected to
One thing that's not clear is what Brown will do if the NFL rules against him again. Will he keep wearing his certified Schutt Vengeance Z10 or will he go AWOL because he's not allowed to wear his Schutt AiR Advantage?
That's a big question that the Raiders probably don't even know that answer to at this point.
Anyway, if you were getting tired of hearing about Brown's helmet, the good news is that it sounds like you're only going to have to deal with this for a few more days.