This has...a lot of different problems with it and lacks a lot of the context that informed those decisions.
First, there's a substantial difference between just "spending money" on players. They opted to move on from Trent Brown because he was offered a (quite frankly absurd) $66 million contract from the Raiders (highest ever for an offensive lineman), with a whopping $36.75 million of that guaranteed. That comes out to a $15 million cap hit and an insane $36.5 million in dead cap year. Not only is Brown probably not worth that money, that kind of a hit is just blatantly unfeasible for a team that has $2 million in cap space atm. Brown is also scheduled to have a $21.5 million cap hit next season, which would knock out half of NE's cap space next year. Not only is this expensive, but it's a major risk, because if Brown gets injured, you've still got to pay $36.75 million to him (or whatever his hypothetical contract would be with NE), which destroys your ability to find a replacement. And let's not forget that Trent Brown has his own history with missing extended time due to injury.
(Also Trent Brown is being accused of domestic violence himself now)
Antonio Brown, conversely, is a much lower risk option. Not only is it a $10 million hit assuming he plays the entire season, but the entire thing contains no guaranteed money outside of a signing bonus which can be voided at the first sign of detrimental conduct. And, no, there has been nothing to suggest they still have to pay Brown. The grievance Brown filed is still underway, and Brown has been too busy getting kicked out of courthouses in Miami for unruly conduct to have any serious hope of winning that.
Finally, I'm not sure if you've been living under a rock or something, but AB's situation hasn't changed substantially since he was cut. No "charges" against him were dropped (technically there were no charges against him at all, since there aren't any criminal cases involving him), but every civil case that I'm aware of is still being pursued. The only one I'm aware of that's changed notably is the Britney Taylor case, which was dropped in order to be refiled at the state level. Brown is also still being sued by a condominium for "trashing" it, and throwing items off the rooftop of a building, one of which almost hit a toddler on the street below. And we haven't even mentioned him sending texts actively threatening one of his alleged victims.
If you think this is just some hit job by the media to sabotage the Patriots then idk what to tell you. You're either paranoid or you've spent too much time browsing Barstool Sports.
Charges dropped to be refiled in a different state, which I'm sure was just part of the plan all along, just like firing and hiring a different team of attorneys was also part of their plan all along. Meanwhile AB's agent is actively trying to get the NFL to hasten their investigation so that he can have his name cleared.
The whole throwing furniture off a building was something known about for a long time, and if you actually watch the video you'd know the couch was thrown into a pool, and the only way that toddler could've been hit is if he was actually in the pool, which would've made being hit by a couch a secondary problem to the fact he'd be drowning.
And no, I don't follow Barstool Sports at all. It's just not difficult to notice that this is the umpteenth time the media has started a witch-hunt against the Patriots or one of it's members. Much like now with them just recently trying to frame Brady as taking shots at his owner with a cameo on a netflix show, and then spending a whole interview session harrassing him with questions about it rather than checking the facts, which reveal the whole cameo was shot in front of a green screen, and that it was the producer who decided to change the backdrop to a massage parlour.
I'm not even gonna dig up past bullshit offenses like deflate gate either.
If you actually believe the media (especially their local Boston media) have any integrity to report the news as it actually happens, I can only feel sorry for you.
Sure, I agree, it probably was the plan all along. But don't come in here and claim that the case being refiled somehow constitutes that the "charges" (and incidentally there still aren't any charges filed in this case) are being dropped. None of the civil suits or allegations that were filed against him while he was in New England (or before) have been dropped. Claiming otherwise is just factually incorrect.
As for the furniture, he threw it into a pool area, and you'll note that quite a few pieces of debris wound up not in the water. The toddler wouldn't have to be in the pool for it to hit them. Not that that's an especially convincing defense: If the best thing you can think up is "Well it couldn't have hit a toddler, but any adults in the pool are fair game," then there might be something wrong with the guy...as if tossing furniture out of a sixth story floor isn't evidence enough of that already.
I won't sit here and pretend that there haven't been any times where I've been frustrated with how the media has handled reporting on New England, but you have to really, REALLY reach to argue that they've somehow been unfair to AB here. As you noted, the hotel charges were brought up and reported on heavily before his time with the Patriots. The only case that started during his time with New England was the Taylor allegations, which were filed long in advance before he joined the Patriots. AB already brought plenty of negative media attention with him long before he was in New England, predominantly at the end of his stay in Pittsburgh, and then in Oakland by, among other things, shouting racist insults and threatening to attack the Raiders' GM. There is quite literally proof that he texted an alleged sexual assault victim threatening to physically abuse them. This guy isn't some victim of a biased media here: He has done all of this to himself, and there (should) be no place in the league for the kind of conduct he's been involved with.
And, before anyone says it, yes, there are plenty of people who should not be in the league as well for the shit they've pulled. But the fact that there are other terrible human beings employed by the NFL doesn't give AB a pass.