When a long-tenured NFL player moves from one team to another, things can get “very personal,” as former Dallas Cowboys wide receiver Dez Bryant recently said after his release.
Whether the move comes via trade or on the free agent market, bad blood can linger on both sides. But there’s always the opportunity to settle the score on the field.
With the NFL’s regular-season schedule released Thursday, here are the top player revenge games on the slate:
Amendola made some waves when he said he had grown weary of the hardball tactics inherent to the Patriot Way, and that Belichick could be an “(expletive) sometimes.” The intradivisional jump adds to the intrigue, though Amendola will have to prove that he’s more than a product of Tom Brady and New England’s system after his standout run in the postseason.
“Well, let me say this. I miss being in that room with him. It’s fun,” Ballard said. “I mean, looking at his press conferences, they are very entertaining. And I’ll say this: He’ll take everybody’s advice… and how they see the player, and he’ll build a consensus and then he’ll pick who he thinks the best players for the Browns will be. And he won’t share that with anybody. On draft day, I think that in his mind he knows what he wants, but he’s going to let everybody have their say and make the best decision…
“It’s collective because he’s listening to everyone in the room and then making a decision. But John keeps things close to the vest. That’s what makes him really good. Look, he’s got a lot of track record of success with picking good players, and he’ll pick the right guys with the Browns.”
“Saying that, we will be open to moving back if we think it is the right thing for us to do and there’s enough players on the board — depending on how far we have to move back — that we feel comfortable taking.”