Skip to content

Gordon on brink of one-year suspension

Gordon AP

The unconventional imposition of a two-game suspension plus a two-game fine on receiver Josh Gordon has raised plenty of questions about the potential consequences for his next violation of the league’s substance-abuse policy.

According to Mary Kay Cabot of the Cleveland Plain Dealer, it’s believed that the next violation by Gordon will result in a one-year suspension.

Gordon’s statement subtly but distinctly creates the impression that he was suspended for only one violation, arising from taking cough syrup that contained codeine.  But no player gets to the point where one violation triggers a suspension under the substance-abuse policy unless there have been multiple prior violations.

The ultimate question is whether Gordon’s two-game suspension plus two-game fine places him in Stage Three of the substance-abuse program.  If so (and per Cabot he is), Gordon now rests on the brink of a one-year suspension — like Jaguars receiver Justin Blackmon and Cardinals linebacker Daryl Washington.

It’s an unwelcome development for the new regime in Cleveland, which lost its second-round pick in the 2013 draft because the old regime used the pick last year to acquire Gordon in the supplemental draft.  The chatter in league circles is that former G.M. Tom Heckert and former coach Pat Shurmur lobbied aggressively to use the second-rounder pre-emptively on Gordon.

If they had any inkling that the team could be sold within weeks after the 2012 supplemental draft (and their boss, Mike Holmgren, surely did), it makes sense that they would want to go all in with Gordon.  To stay employed beyond 2012, they needed a big season.  So why not borrow against a draft that they wouldn’t be presiding over if they didn’t turn things around?

They didn’t, and they’re gone.  Gordon will be gone for at least a year if he can’t navigate Stage Three of the program without another violation of the policy.

“He’s a really talented guy,” one source with knowledge of Gordon’s career told PFT.  “It’s too bad if he can’t figure it out.”

If Gordon didn’t isn’t figuring it out via his two-game suspension, he never will.  He’ll lose nearly $150,000 in salary, and he faces a possible attack on a portion of his $2.3 million signing bonus.  Under the labor deal, the Browns may try to recover 2/17ths of the $575,000 allocation for this year, which equates to $33,823 that he’d have to pay back to the Browns.  (Owner Jimmy Haslam prefers not to think of it as a rebate.)

Time and again, we hear from team executives who realize that many players smoke marijuana.  It becomes a problem only when the player gets caught — and when the player can’t or won’t choose playing over smoking.

For Gordon, the accidental nature of his latest violation (if his excuse is truthful) makes the situation a bit less dire.  Either way, he’s now one accidental or intentional violation away from spending a year away from football.

Permalink 14 Comments Feed for comments Latest Stories in: Cleveland Browns, Home, Rumor Mill
14 Responses to “Gordon on brink of one-year suspension”
  1. blackbug99 says: Jun 9, 2013 8:22 AM

    Don’t do the crime, if you can’t do the time!

  2. greyhawk9 says: Jun 9, 2013 8:34 AM

    one source with knowledge of gordons career……love it

  3. rajbais says: Jun 9, 2013 9:19 AM

    Two of America’s biggest front running WRs are still available, Brandon Lloyd and Randy Moss.

    We know that Lombardi won’t want Lloyd because of what happened with Belichick and Norv won’t because Lloyd sucked in front of his brother Ron in a Champaign reunion in Chicago.

    Maybe Moss will get considered.

    Lombardi praised Moss for how he did in Oakland under Norv in 2005 and feels that Norv is credible.

    Maybe Randy Moss could be added.

    Then again that’s what he deserves. He wasn’t good enough to get playing time in San Fran and now he’s stuck in Cleveland if they are the only offer for him.

  4. osiris33 says: Jun 9, 2013 10:59 AM

    Very clever rebate reference Florio. Not sure anyone got it. Shame.

    BTW, Golden Tate caught the ball. Seahawks 14, Packers 12.

  5. b3nz0z says: Jun 9, 2013 11:39 AM

    “It becomes a problem only when the player gets caught — and when the player can’t or won’t choose playing over smoking.”

    It seems like the problem comes from making them choose between completely unrelated things.

  6. harrisonhits2 says: Jun 9, 2013 11:40 AM

    Something doesn’t add up with Gordon’s statement.

    Narcotic pain killers are not things people get suspended for by the league when they are properly prescribed. Team doctors prescribe pain killers all the time.

    Either there was something else Gordon is not mentioning, or the codeine wasn’t legally prescribed.

  7. Kaz says: Jun 9, 2013 2:16 PM

    Gordons statement isn’t truthful on multiple accounts. The idea this was his first offense, and the idea that he was suspended for taking something a doctor prescribed. Everyone knows if you have a prescription for the meds your fine under the substance abuse policy.

  8. watchfullhose says: Jun 9, 2013 4:27 PM

    That’s not true at all. You’re quoting a policy you know nothing about.

  9. golfdude65 says: Jun 9, 2013 7:08 PM

    Ok how come his supposed other incidents were not reported by the blood sucking media? Every time Blackmon has screwed up it has been front page news. Gordon gets suspended and all of the sudden their have been other incidents no one has heard about.

  10. on2wheels247 says: Jun 9, 2013 11:17 PM

    His previous violation was in college, and everyone talked about it when he was drafted since it cost him his spot on the team at Baylor.

  11. walkinginthewasteland says: Jun 10, 2013 8:57 AM

    Add Santonio Holmes to the list of WRs who are susceptible for 1 year suspensions with their next violation.

  12. bowsi says: Jun 10, 2013 9:25 AM

    Jimmy Haslam got into trouble by having Flori-da do the books. 2/17 x 575000=67,647.

  13. irishdawg42 says: Jun 10, 2013 3:05 PM

    harrisonhits2 says: Jun 9, 2013 11:40 AM

    “Something doesn’t add up with Gordon’s statement.

    Narcotic pain killers are not things people get suspended for by the league when they are properly prescribed. Team doctors prescribe pain killers all the time.

    Either there was something else Gordon is not mentioning, or the codeine wasn’t legally prescribed.”

    Per the CBA, more specifically, the leagues substance abuse policy. It is up to the athlete to know EXACTLY what is going into his body. Being prescribed by a doctor makes absolutely no difference.

    Being prescribed would only give him ammunition to get a reduced penalty, which in this case he did as the normal penalty is a 4 game suspension and he only received a 2 game suspension with a 4 game check fine.

    So his story actually DOES follow the guidelines set forth by the substance abuse policy…

  14. steagles66 says: Jun 13, 2013 12:26 AM

    Why don’t the bum browns just trade for mike Vick use need a qb because you not going anywhere with that bum

Leave a Reply

You must be logged in to leave a comment. Not a member? Register now!