New England Patriots

Wide Receiver Antonio Brown of the New England Patriots warms up prior to the game against the Miami Dolphins at Hard Rock Stadium on September 15, 2019 in Miami, Florida. (Photo by Michael Reaves/Getty Images)

By Matt McCarthy,

It comes as no surprise that the Patriots reportedly did not pay Antonio Brown the $5 million he was due on Monday.

According to Mike Florio of Pro Football Talk, the Patriots decided against paying Brown the first of two signing bonus installments in his contract. The team gave the troubled wide receiver $9 million in guarantees before cutting him 11 days later, before the first portion of the bonus was due to be paid.

If Brown wants to get his money, he will have to file a grievance against the team, which he seems almost certain to do.

According to Florio, Brown might be able to win that grievance since the Patriots case against paying him might not be airtight.

“The move [to not pay Brown] was widely expected, even though the team’s argument for not paying earned money to Brown ultimately may fail,” Florio wrote. “He did not commit a ‘forfeitable breach’ under the terms of the labor deal. Thus, the Patriots will have to fashion an argument based on, for example, Brown withholding information as to the threatened sexual assault and rape litigation from the team.”

“The Patriots would argue that they wouldn’t have signed Brown if they’d known about the potential lawsuit, especially since it can (and did) spark an NFL investigation that could result in Brown being placed on paid leave,” Florio added.

According to Adam Schefter of ESPN, Robert Kraft has no intention of paying Brown in the wake of the wide receiver’s tweet-storm on Sunday in which he criticized the Patriots owner regarding his solicitation of prostitution charge in Florida, but ultimately Kraft’s hand could be forced on the matter if Brown wins a grievance against the organization.

You can hear Matt McCarthy on various 98.5 The Sports Hub programs. Follow him on Twitter @MattMcCarthy985.