By Matt Dolloff, 985TheSportsHub.com
The Patriots' signing of wide receiver Antonio Brown immediately drew comparisons to Hall of Famer Randy Moss, who famously came over from the Raiders in 2007 for a fourth-round pick. Besides the potential for historic production in the Patriots offense, the two don't have much in common.
Brown's signing is more akin to the Patriots' 2014 addition of cornerback Darrelle Revis, who will one day join Moss in Canton. Brown is a hired gun at the top of his powers, and only a classic Bill Belichick "reclamation project" in terms of his public image. He didn't have to cave on a significant discount and he knew all along the Patriots were the best possible situation for him, so he desperately wanted out of his former team.
That all sounds a lot more like Revis, who happily jetted from Tampa Bay to come play for Belichick and deliver what would be the final All-Pro season of his career. One difference worth noting is that Revis never exhibited the kind of behavior that Brown displayed in Oakland or Pittsburgh; Revis commanded his massive contracts mainly through his play on the field and disciplined negotiating. Regardless of the personality differences, Revis draws significant parallels to Brown.
The most apt comparison is the money.
On paper, the Patriots are paying Brown among the top receivers in the market. We know this thanks to a new report from Adam Schefter that the Patriots included a $20 million option year in his deal - the same exact structure as Revis back in 2014. Brown reportedly gets $9 million guaranteed in the form of a signing bonus, which now prorates over two years and saves the team $4.5 million against the cap for 2019.
The Patriots smartly declined Revis' option and let him go sign one more lucrative deal with the New York Jets. You remember how that worked out. Let's say Brown hits the full $15 million this year, which probably means All-Pro-caliber numbers, and helps the Pats get a seventh Lombardi Trophy. Brown would practically be guaranteed to cash in one more time somewhere else. He would be 32 years old when that happens, though.
So there's a chance that Brown's stint with the Patriots - and the rest of his career - plays out just like it did with Revis five years ago. So you can definitely call the Brown deal Revis 2.0.
Matt Dolloff is a digital producer for 985TheSportsHub.com. Any opinions expressed do not necessarily reflect those of 98.5 The Sports Hub, Beasley Media Group, or any subsidiaries. Have a news tip, question, or comment for Matt? Follow him on Twitter @mattdolloff or email him at [email protected].