The Cleveland Browns recently traded star wide receiver Josh Gordon and a 2019 seventh-round pick to the New England Patriots for a 2019 fifth-round pick, ending Gordon’s troubled experience with the Browns who have been sitting at the bottom of the NFL standings for many years.
The Browns traded Gordon because he had misinformed the team about a commercial he was shooting for his “Flash” clothing line, a “hype video” where he performed football drills and ended up limping after running a 40-yard dash. The Browns felt like they could not trust Gordon anymore due to what happened and also because of situations in the past that have sidelined him.
The Browns were originally going to release Gordon but then news came out that eight to ten other teams were looking for a trade deal to get him. Seeing what the Browns received for Gordon, many people would say that this trade was a steal for the Patriots because of Gordon’s talent. New England will pay Gordon the $697,058 that is left on his 2018 contract.
Gordon’s time in Cleveland is not something that he would want to remember. His career in Cleveland will forever bring up a bunch of “what if’s.” What If Josh Gordon played all the games he was suspended for?
In 2013, Gordon’s second season in the NFL, he was already being suspended for violating the NFL’s substance-abuse policy, and he still went on to have a terrific season racking up 1,646 receiving yards and nine touchdowns in just14 games played. After the 2013 Gordon played only 11 more games for the Browns including the week one game for this season.
The following season Gordon was facing a full year suspension for driving under the influence in Raleigh, North Carolina. Due to the new NFL drug policy Gordon’s suspension was reduced to just 10 games.
The case came back up in 2015 where the NFL decided to suspend Gordon the whole season for alcohol use. He came back again in 2016 and failed another drug test, and was found with marijuana in his system. From 2016 to 2018 Josh Gordon missed 28 games. The Browns gave Gordon plenty of chances to change his lifestyle and become the person he needed to become but it all fell apart in the end.
The biggest question that can be asked with this trade is if its worth it for the New England Patriots to give this man another chance after he has screwed up so many times. Why not go after another player who’s going to give less trouble off the field?
Well, obviously Gordon’s talent is outstanding, but when it comes to being a part of a professional organization people aren’t given too many chances to mess up. When asked about the team’s history of giving second chances Patriots coach Bill Belichick told WEEI, “Obviously, they don’t all work out, but that’s the intent.”
Belichick has a reputation among coaches of not messing around and in this case if Gordon screws up once we can all take a good guess that he will be released. Teams don’t want to deal with off the field related stuff, they want to focus on winning games and making the franchise better.
The New England Patriots have been to the Super Bowl three times in the last four years and have been a very successful franchise since 2001. The Cleveland Browns have been a very bad team for a long time. With the trade Gordon is facing an opportunity that can possibly change his career entirely if he’s able to stay on the field.
The Patriots were in need of a wide receiver. In order for them to make room they released wide receiver Corey Coleman who also came from the Browns. Acquiring Gordon is a big move knowing that he can play really well, but who knows how he will perform. It’s going to be interesting to see how Josh Gordon fits in with the players and how they welcome him into the locker room. Gordon is also walking into a winning environment that he is not very familiar with and it is going to be very different for him.
The Patriots will be playing the Detroit Lions this Sunday and Josh Gordon is cleared to play despite the minor Hamstring injury.