Sportress of Blogitude

Antonio Brown to honor Jose Fernandez, Kimbo Slice on cleats (pic)


Antonio Brown will once again don custom tribute cleats on gameday. Although this time around, it appears the Pittsburgh Steelers wide receiver will only wear them during warm-ups ahead of Sunday’s road game against the Miami Dolphins.

TMZ Sports is reporting Brown’s most recent edition of his weekly tribute cleats are in honor of Jose Fernandez and Kimbo Slice, both of whom recently passed away and were enormously popular in the Miami sports community.

Corey Pane, who Brown usually enlists to design his custom cleats, says this week’s tribute shoes “are really important” to Brown due to the wideout being born and raised in Miami.

Fernandez, the late Miami Marlins pitcher who died last month in a boating accident, has received similar tributes since his tragic death.

But this week’s sneaker soap opera for Brown has a snag. In order to avoid running afoul once again of NFL — a/k/a No Fun League — stringent uniform policies, Brown apparently will remove the custom cleats following pregame warm-ups, thereby avoiding an expected fine.

Brown recently ran afoul of NFL policy by wearing cleats in tribute of Arnold Palmer (here) and Muhammad Ali. In an earlier week, Brown donned cleats that featured images of his children. On each occasion, Brown reportedly was informed that either he change out of the custom cleats or be kicked out of the game.

Steelers head coach Mike Tomlin said recently that the issues surrounding Brown’s choice of gameday footwear were “irrelevant.”

It appears Brown’s decision to remove the cleats before kickoff will make any chance of controversy irrelevant as well.