Antonio Brown had his best game of the season on Sunday, catching six passes for 101 yards and two touchdowns in the Steelers 41-17 win over the Falcons. But days later, TMZ reported that one of the league's best receivers was the target of two lawsuits originally filed in August stemming from an incident last April in Florida when Brown allegedly threw items from a 14th-floor condo balcony.
According to incident reports, Brown had returned from an 11-day trip to find $80,000 and a handgun missing from his condo. The wide receiver was described as "highly agitated" in the report, and claimed that building security officers had "set him up."
One lawsuit is for emotional distress after a father said his 22-month-old child was traumatized by falling vases and a ottoman that landed "a mere foot or two" away while the child and his grandfather walked near the pool. The other lawsuit was filed by the owner of the condo unit, which was fully furnished when Brown signed the temporary lease, and claims Brown caused $15,000 in damage.
On Tuesday, Steelers coach Mike Tomlin told reporters "I have no comments regarding that," regarding the lawsuits. "I know nothing about it."
By Thursday, Brown issued a statement defending himself.
"It has now been made public that two lawsuits containing false claims have been filed against me," he said in a statement, via Pro Football Talk. "The facts will soon come out that prove my innocence. My focus will remain on football and I will not let the cases serve as a distraction."
Brown wasn't arrested or charged though that doesn't mean the NFL might not be interested in the specifics of what happened.
"We are aware of and will continue to monitor the civil suits," NFL spokesman Brian McCarthy told the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette on Wednesday.
The Steelers (2-2-1), meanwhile, travel to Cincinnati to face the AFC North-leading Bengals (4-1) on Sunday afternoon.