Will Josh Gordon be allowed back into the NFL for the 2021 season?
The NFLPA is recommending that WR Josh Gordon be reinstated by the NFL.
Josh Gordon was given an indefinite suspension by the NFL in December 2019 and it was his sixth suspension for violating the league's policy on substance abuse and the use of performance-enhancing substances. Since 2013, Josh Gordon has struggled to keep clean and it has nearly edged him out of the NFL completely.
It's been a long road back this time around for Josh Gordon. The NFL gave him a conditional reinstatement in December 2020 and had a tryout lined up with the Seattle Seahawks, but there was a setback in his recovery and he's been out since. Gordon hasn't been out of football this entire time, though. He participated in the Fan Controlled Football league with fellow NFL outcast and former Cleveland Browns teammate Johnny Manziel. His team, the Zappers, were eliminated in the playoffs.
Back in July, Josh Gordon filed for reinstatement. There has been no word from the NFL on plans to do so yet. The NFLPA recently backed Gordon and stated the WR should be let back into the league after undergoing a long recovery and now has a solid support system around him with family and friends, including Johnny Manziel.
Josh Gordon is 30 and would be a free agent if the NFL allows him back. Since entering the league in 2012 through the supplemental draft, he's only played in more than 10 games in a season five times and missed the 2015 and 2016 seasons with suspensions. If Josh Gordon returns, is he worth anything to an NFL team? He had a career-high 1,646 yards and nine TDs in 2013 as a First-Team All-Pro, but hasn't had more than 740 since.
The teams who could use a WR right now are the New York Jets, Indianapolis Colts, Denver Broncos, Dallas Cowboys, and New Orleans Saints. Dallas and New York could be some of the more willing teams to give Josh Gordon a tryout, but nothing is guaranteed for him this season. He'll likely be on a short leash as well, meaning another mistake could put him into early retirement. The NFL has to allow him back in first, though. Honestly, his time in the NFL should be over. Someone with this sort of background doesn't need a distraction like the NFL and the media. They need to focus on their health and staying clean. If football is an outlet for him that he needs, there are other leagues for Josh Gordon. The XFL is starting up in 2023 and he could still have a career in a smaller market. The last thing Josh Gordon needs is the media causing him stress.
At least he's vaccinated and eager to play.
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