When he entered the league in 2012, wide receiver Josh Gordon became an immediate success, earning First-Team All-Pro status in 2013 when he led the NFL in receiving yards (1,646). Following several years of drug-related issues, multiple suspensions, and another brief hiatus this offseason, the 27-year-old returned to fulfill his hype in 2018.
Well, it didn’t go as planned for the Cleveland Browns, as Gordon managed only one catch that went for a 17-yard touchdown in Week 1 against the Pittsburgh Steelers. Following reports that Gordon was being released by Cleveland over the weekend, it looks like the talented wide receiver is headed for a new home.
First reported by NFL Network insider Ian Rapoport, the Cleveland Browns are sending Gordon to the New England Patriots in return for a fifth-round pick.
That trade will include a seventh-round selection if Gordon cannot manage to be active in 10 games with the five-time Super Bowl winning franchise, according to ESPN’s Adam Schefter.
Following reports that the troubled wide receiver showed up late to Browns practice over the weekend with a pulled hamstring from a promotional shoot, the Browns stated that they would part ways with Gordon by Monday. It was also reported that Gordon was “not himself” at the practice, and Cleveland’s front office could have been under the impression he was under the influence.
If those reports are true, then New England has their hands full to get the former Pro Bowl wide receiver back on track. If they can right the ship, though, then the Patriots just picked up one of the NFL’s most naturally gifted pass catchers for basically a bag of Cheetos.
Gordon’s first two season in the NFL flashed brilliance, until substance abuse issues took control of his career. After two years away from football, he returned to the Browns near the end of 2017 and logged 18 catches for 335 yards his first NFL touchdown in five years.
The risk is really high, but so is the reward if Bill Belichick can weave Josh Gordon into the Patriots’ receiving corps alongside Rob Gronkowski, Chris Hogan, Phillip Dorsett and Julian Edelman, when he returns from his four-game suspension.
Get ready, folks. The Tom Brady to Josh Gordon connection could be coming to an end zone near you very soon.