New Oakland Raiders offensive tackle has to feel pretty good after signing a whopping four-year, $66 million contract upon the opening of 2019 NFL free agency. Not only did he cash in on a deal that now makes him the league's highest-paid offensive tackle with a $16.5 million average annual salary, but he's also coming off a Super Bowl victory with the New England Patriots earlier this year.

Still, Brown has some bitter feelings about what happened with the team that drafted him in Round 7 of the 2015 NFL Draft, the San Francisco 49ers.

Speaking to reporters during his introductory press conference with the Raiders, Brown offered up some thoughts on what he went through during that period in time and being dealt away from the Niners in 2018.

"I think I was playing pretty well when I was in San Fran but what took my game to the next level was just going to an organization who believed in me," Brown said. "[With the Patriots] an organization who believed in me. A locker room full of guys that believed in each other, pushed each other - we worked hard as a team, no egos. Confidence shot through the roof and I kind of felt disrespected about the trade and I wanted to prove everybody wrong."

Brown entered 2018 as the de facto 49ers right tackle after starting a total of 26 games there the previous two seasons. But on the first night of the 2018 NFL Draft, the Niners selected former Notre Dame offensive tackle Mike McGlinchey. Then they traded Brown and a fifth-round pick to the Patriots a day later in exchange for a Round 3 selection. McGlinchey was then placed into the starting right tackle spot.

There were question marks about Brown's work ethic and his ability to stay in shape during his San Francisco tenure. Plus, 49ers head coach Kyle Shanahan was insistent on improving his team's run-blocking abilities, which didn't play into Brown's skill set at the time. Brown was known much more for his pass protection, while McGlinchey was viewed as more of a mobile run blocker.

In the week leading up to Super Bowl LIII, Brown echoed similar sentiments to NBC Sports Bay Area's Matt Maiocco, saying, "I just feel like me coming here with all the bull crap that's been said about me and my name has been slandered, me coming here and shattering all those bad things that have been said about me, I think that's helped me out a lot."

At least Brown now has 66 million reasons to be happy about the trade that sent him to a Super Bowl champion and then to a record-setting deal.
  • Peter Panacy
  • Written by:
    Peter Panacy has been writing about the 49ers since 2011 for outlets like Bleacher Report, Niner Noise, 49ers Webzone, and is occasionally heard as a guest on San Francisco's 95.7 FM The Game and the Niners' flagship station, KNBR 680. Feel free to follow him, or direct any inquiries to his Twitter account.

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