Head Coach And Players Leave Antonio Brown’s Arena Football Team After Missed Payment, Misdemeanor Incident

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The Albany Empire, the arena football team in which Antonio Brown is a 95% owner, seems to be in complete shambles after players weren’t paid last week. The missed payments then led to a misdemeanor incident, the coach leaving, as well as a number of players.

According to the Albany Times-Union, players and coaches are supposed to be paid every Friday. The team was last paid on April 21 and played a game against the Carolina Cobras this past Sunday despite not being paid on April 28, two days prior to the game.


Coach Damon Ware confirmed the missed payment as well as his departure from the team.

“Nobody has been paid,’ Ware wrote in a comment on Facebook. “If you disagreed with that, you were a problem. I am certainly not desperate enough to coach for free. I love what Coach (Tom) Menas and I built over the last few years. Sending my love and prayers.”

Former NFL receiver Antonio Brown reacts to child support issues. (Credit: Getty Images)
Antonio Brown’s Albany Empire arena football team is in some trouble. (Credit: Getty Images)

Alberony Denis, the team’s acting president, said the lack of payment was due to issues with the payroll, and the issue is said to be resolved.

Six players also left the team, including starting quarterback Sam Castranova, after they did not receive a room key at the team’s Albany Holiday Inn hotel. They were suspended from the team after Denis confirmed an incident on the bus returning home from the team’s game in North Carolina.

The Albany police responded to a report of aggravated harassment at the team’s hotel on Monday morning, according to police spokesman Steve Smith.

Aggravated harassment is a Class A misdemeanor that includes threatening communications (spoken or written), as well as contact that causes physical injury to another party.

The Empire is 1-2 this season and is now looking to fill holes both on the field and on the sideline. The team recently posted to Instagram that it was looking for a new head coach and a number of players to fill position needs.

Written by Mark Harris

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