While the NFL still hasn’t reinstated Josh Gordon following his season long suspension in 2015, it won’t be surprising to see the Cleveland Browns, tired of drama, offer him up for trade, which will then have the New England Patriots, New York Giants, New York Jets and Baltimore Ravens fighting over him.
Gordon didn’t play a single game in 2015 and was suspended for 11 games in the 2014 season for violating the NFL’s substance-abuse policy. He applied for reinstatement last month, but still hasn’t heard back from the league. Anyway, officially, the Browns make it sound like they’re excited to have him back, which isn’t surprising considering how well Gordon has done when he was on the field.
Soon to be 25, Gordon was exceptional in 2013, his sophomore season with the Browns. He made the All-Pro and Pro Bowl teams, leading the NFL with 1646 yards (despite missing two games) and averaging 117.6 yards per game. He also caught nine touchdown passes, while setting a number of records, being the first to have two consecutive games of 200 receiving yards or more while posting the most receiving yards over a two-game, three-game and four-game span.
So when they have this kind of talent coming back, why would the Browns trade him? This isn’t a team drowning in quality right now, having no one to use the franchise tag for example. Drama might be the reason. Gordon might be a changed man in terms of how the NFL views right and wrong, but it doesn’t mean he isn’t going to slip again. And with the Browns starting anew again while hoping to erase the embarrassing involvement with Johnny Manziel, having someone lie Gordon could be considered a risk.
It’s hard to think of a team that won’t want Gordon. The Patriots have a tendency to take on troubled projects, but so do the Dallas Cowboys. Out of the teams mentioned, the one in need most of a #1 receiver are the Ravens, who did suffer from an injury crisis last season, but were doing pretty badly on both sides of the ball even before things got a lot worse.
Both the Giants and the Jets are pass happy teams with clear number one receiving threats, and could be extremely scary with Gordon on board. The same can be said for the Patriots, who could always use a pair of sure hands on deep routes, something they don’t have. Their expertise is keeping it short through their tight end and two slot receivers. Gordon, just like on the Giants and Jets, could mean very bad news for their opponents.