HOUSTON — Former Houston Texans offensive tackle Duane Brown is speaking out about his ugly split from the team with another former Texan, Arian Foster.
“I love the city of Houston. I’ve done so much as a player there, and as a humanitarian,” Brown said.
It was for an episode of Foster’s podcast “Now What.” Brown says his relationship with the team took a turn for the worse after he failed a drug test in 2015, which he appealed, and his 10-game suspension was overturned. Then he tore his quad during the last game of the 2015 season. “They started distancing themselves from me because they didn’t believe me for one with the case. There was no belief in me that I was telling the truth,” Brown said.
In 2016, Brown also protested during the National Anthem when the Texans played New England, causing more tension. “I protested by putting my fist in the air. I didn’t even kneel. I felt like if I put my fist up in the air, I’m showing solidarity with those who are fighting that fight while still trying to stand,” Brown said.
At the end of the 2016 season, Brown says he made it known that he wanted to re-negotiate his contract, so he could be guaranteed money in case he got injured.
“I wanted to finish my career there, and I wanted security in doing that,” Brown said.
The team wouldn’t budge.
“There was no conversation throughout the whole off season about it, which is why I didn’t show up to anything. There was a conversation around mini camp that was like, we just can’t do deals with just two years left that’s not how we operate, but they had done it before. It was basically like we’ve done it before, but you’re not worth that. You gotta know your worth if you feel like your underpaid and your worth more and you voice that,” Brown said.
Brown skipped 6 of the Texans games last season, hoping to pressure the team into negotiations, but the Texans didn’t cave and traded him to Seattle in October.
For football fans in Houston, Brown was once a Texan, and therefore always a Texan. That is unless we play Seattle in the Super Bowl.