Cleveland Browns’, Josh Gordon, is set to make another attempt at an NFL comeback. The receiver hasn’t played in a regular season game since the 2014 season, but the league has announced that they will reinstate him on a conditional basis immediately. Gordon will be allowed to join the Browns in team meetings and participate in individual workouts, then officially join the team on the practice field on November 20.
Gordon has had a rocky road since being drafted into the league in 2012. He has battled drug usage, as he has received several suspensions because of it. In 2014, he only appeared in 5 games after serving a 11-game suspension for violating the league’s drug policy. The next year, he was hit with a year-long ban and wasn’t able to apply for reinstatement until March of 2016. The receiver was eventually reinstated and played in the 2016 preseason, but another diluted sample kept the star player from returning to the field.
It’s now 2017, and it seems Commissioner Goodell is going to give Gordon another shot and reinstate him. In a press conference after a meeting with Gordon, Goodell said “Everyone – including Josh’s teammates and coaches, the Browns’ ownership and organization, the Program professionals and all of us at the league office – want him to have every opportunity to resume his career and to be successful in the NFL.” “Whether that happens, however, at the end of the day will depend on Josh. His commitment to sobriety and to reaching his goals in football and beyond will determine his success. It ultimately is up to Josh.”
For now, Gordon will be held on the Commissioner’s Exempt list so he isn’t taking up one of the Browns roster spots, allowing them to decide what to do with him. On November 27, the team can activate him, potentially making him a go for Week 13 against the Chargers. It’s not certain that Gordon is in tip top football shape, but if he can return to old form where he lead the NFL in receiving yards in just 14 games in 2013, he could very much be a bright spot in an otherwise murky Cleveland Browns team.