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Derek Carr leads Raiders to four touchdown drives against Seahawks

Derek Carr AP

Derek Carr is making the most of his final preseason opportunity against the Seattle Seahawks.

The rookie quarterback has led the Oakland Raiders to four consecutive touchdown drives to open the game against the Seahawks.

Carr led a 12-play, 68-yard scoring drive to tie the game at 7-7 after Seattle took an early lead. Carr converted a pair of 3rd-and-10 opportunities on the drive before Latavius Murray capped the drive with a 5-yard touchdown run.

Oakland’s special teams then helped set up two more scores.

Keith McGill stripped Seattle kick returner Bryan Walters on the ensuing kickoff  which Oakland managed to recover. It took just one play for Carr to connect with Denarius Moore for a 36-yard touchdown behind former Oakland cornerback Phillip Adams for a touchdown.

After a Seattle three-and-out, T.J. Carrie returned the punt 45 yards into Seattle territory. Again, it took one play for Carr to strike as tight end Mychal Rivera reeled a tipped pass by Malcolm Smith for a 20-yard touchdown.

Another three-and-out by Seattle led to another touchdown by Oakland. Carr marched the Raiders 61 yards on eight plays with an 11-yard touchdown pass to Moore to cap the drive and give the Raiders a 28-7 lead.

Carr’s night was done after the fourth touchdown drive of the game and was replaced by Matt McGloin. Carr finished 11-for-13 for 143 yards and three touchdowns. With Matt Schaub battling a sore elbow, Carr put together a terrific final impression before the start of the regular season that may cause second thoughts as to who should start the season opener against the New York Jets.

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Santonio Holmes impresses in Bears’ exhibition finale

Santonio Holmes, Justin Gilbert AP

In the span of a little less than 10 minutes in Thursday night’s exhibition at Cleveland, new Bears wide receiver Santonio Holmes made a pair of plays that suggest he’s got some good football left to play.

First, the 30-year-old Holmes turned a short reception into a 32-yard touchdown when Browns rookie cornerback Justin Gilbert took a bad angle. Then, minutes later, Holmes broke a 30-yard punt return, running through two tackle attempts, keeping his balance and finding plenty of open space toward the Browns’ sideline. The return set up a Chicago field goal.

Off the field, Holmes did something notable, too. According to Bears sideline reporter Lou Canellis, Holmes gave the ball from his first Bears TD to rookie quarterback David Fales, who threw the pass. It was Fales’ first scoring throw as a pro, and Holmes wanted him to have the ball as a keepsake, Canellis said on the Bears’ telecast of the game.

In all, it was a good stretch for Holmes, who’s trying to find a role with the Bears after being released by the Jets earlier in the offseason.

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Jerry Jones admits to talking to Adrian Peterson, doesn’t address the key issue

Jones AP

In a pre-game radio interview that aired on 105.3 The Fan in Dallas/Ft. Worth, Cowboys owner/General Manager/unofficial team doctor Jerry Jones addressed the now-notorious June conversation with Vikings running back Adrian Peterson, which reportedly included Peterson expressing a desire to play for the Cowboys.

Jones admitted talking to Peterson, explaining that an associate of Peterson’s gave Jones the phone, possibly passing it through the ESPN writer who was working on a profile of Jerry Jones.

“We basically talked,” Jones said.  “Adrian’s from Texas and certainly it was easy to talk to such a great player.”

Jones at no point denied that Adrian said he wants to play for the Cowboys after his time with the Vikings ends, and Jones said nothing about the words attributed to him in the ESPN profile regarding the topic of Peterson potentially becoming a Cowboy.

If Peterson indeed said that he wants to play for the Cowboys, Jones should have (under the tampering policy) immediately ended the call and alerted the league office.  Those facts alone could be enough to trigger a violation of the league’s tampering policy.

Moving forward, look for the league to quietly investigate this one, posing far more pointed questions to Peterson, Jones, and anyone else who knows anything about a highly unusual communication between a player who is the face of one franchise, and an owner who is the face of another.

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Blake Bortles continues his strong preseason

bortles AP

The Jacksonville Jaguars insist that rookie quarterback Blake Bortles will spend 2014 on the bench, behind starter Chad Henne. But Bortles sure looks like he’s ready to start in the NFL right now.

Bortles continued his strong preseason performance today in the preseason finale against the Falcons, completing four of his six passes for 86 yards, including a 57-yard touchdown pass to fellow rookie Marqise Lee. That touchdown pass was a thing of beauty: Bortles stood in the pocket with pressure in his face and threw the ball about 50 yards in the air, right into Lee’s hands.

Overall, Bortles is now 32-for-51 for 521 yards, with two touchdowns and no interceptions, in the preseason.

So why isn’t that enough for Bortles to earn the starting job? Because Jaguars coach Gus Bradley has said all along that there’s nothing Bortles can do to earn the starting job, at least as long as Henne is healthy. The Jaguars have stuck to their plan of giving Bortles a year to learn, while Henne plays.

But if Henne struggles, that’s going to be a difficult plan to stick to. Bortles looks too good to ride the pine. Unless Henne makes the Jaguars a surprise playoff contender, expect Bortles to start as a rookie. Even if it won’t come in Week One.

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No comment from Cowboys, yet, on Peterson conversation

Jones Getty Images

The Dallas Cowboys have issued no comment in response to the comments from owner Jerry Jones to Vikings running back Adrian Peterson, reportedly in response to Peterson’s stated desire to play for the Cowboys after his time with the Vikings ends.

But while the Cowboys currently are saying nothing, don’t be surprised if Jones addresses the topic at tonight’s preseason game against the Broncos.

Also, don’t be surprised if Jones points out that he didn’t initiate the call, and that he was merely being courteous to Peterson, out of respect for the man and the player.

And don’t be surprised if the NFL, which has issued a “no comment” in response to the revelation, quietly investigates the situation.

Finally, don’t be surprised if the Cowboys face some scrutiny for failing to immediately notify the league office of Peterson’s stated interest in joining the Cowboys, since the tampering policy clearly and expressly contemplates a report to the NFL if/when a player under contract with one team contacts another team.

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More scrutiny on RG3’s throwing mechanics

rg3 AP

When Washington quarterback Robert Griffin III burst onto the scene with a spectacular rookie year in 2012, he was like nothing the NFL had seen before: A good enough athlete that he could have been an Olympic hurdler, playing the quarterback position.

But when Griffin’s rookie year ended with a major knee injury, and he looked like something less than an Olympian when he tried to run in 2013, many questions were raised about whether Griffin really had the fundamentals to be an NFL quarterback. There were questions about Griffin’s footwork as a passer and questions about his ability to read through his progressions, although many of those questions came from people who lack the credentials to question an NFL quarterback’s passing fundamentals.

Say what you will for Ron Jaworski of ESPN, but he does have the credentials. And Jaworski says that Griffin looks fundamentally flawed as a passer.

“He’s still developing,” Jaworski said on ESPN Radio, via the Washington Post. “We’ll see what Jay Gruden and this new offensive staff can do for him. But clearly he’s got to learn to play from the pocket. His mechanics have regressed, by the way. They have regressed in the fundamental way of throwing the football: his throwing slot, his footwork, his inability to remain consistent in that. When you and I talk all the time, the word that comes up a lot in my mind is consistency. And we see a lot of players in this league, they make great throws. They can make a great play. But you have to do it on a consistent basis. That’s what separates the great players from the guys that have short careers.”

Griffin declined across the board as a passer last year: His passer rating, completion percentage, passing touchdowns and yards per pass were all down, while his interceptions were up. And his performance in the preseason hasn’t done anything to assuage the concerns of those who think the 2013 version of Griffin is the version we’re going to see going forward. If what Griffin really needs is work on his mechanics, then there’s no more important priority for Gruden in his first year in Washington.

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Roger Goodell’s letter to NFL owners on domestic violence

Roger Goodell AP

[Editor's note:  NFL commissioner Roger Goodell sent the following letter to all 32 NFL owners today.]

Since becoming Commissioner, my focus has been on ensuring that the NFL is held in the highest regard by our fans, players, business partners, and public authorities.  My commitment has always been to do what is right and to protect the integrity of the game, both now and long into the future.

Recently, we have addressed issues of respect — respect for co-workers, opponents, fans, game officials, and others.  Whether in the context of workplace conduct, advancing policies of diversity and inclusion, or promoting professionalism in all we do, our mission has been to create and sustain model workplaces filled with people of character.  Although the NFL is celebrated for what happens on the field, we must be equally vigilant in what we do off the field.

At times, however, and despite our best efforts, we fall short of our goals.  We clearly did so in response to a recent incident of domestic violence.  We allowed our standards to fall below where they should be and lost an important opportunity to emphasize our strong stance on a critical issue and the effective programs we have in place.  My disciplinary decision led the public to question our sincerity, our commitment, and whether we understood the toll that domestic violence inflicts on so many families. I take responsibility both for the decision and for ensuring that our actions in the future properly reflect our values.  I didn’t get it right.   Simply put, we have to do better.  And we will.

The public response reinforced my belief that the NFL is held to a higher standard, and properly so.  Much of the criticism stemmed from a fundamental recognition that the NFL is a leader, that we do stand for important values, and that we can project those values in ways that have a positive impact beyond professional football.  We embrace this role and the responsibility that comes with it.  We will listen openly, engage our critics constructively, and seek continuous improvement in everything we do. We will use this opportunity to create a positive outcome by promoting policies of respect for women both within and outside of the workplace.  We will work with nationally recognized experts to ensure that the NFL has a model policy on domestic violence and sexual assault.  We will invest time and resources in training, programs and services that will become part of our culture.  And we will increase the sanctions imposed on NFL personnel who violate our policies.

In the past few weeks, I have reviewed all aspects of our Personal Conduct Policy and met with a wide range of experts (several of whom we have been working with for some time), as well as with the NFLPA and many of you. Those discussions will continue. They have helped us to identify a number of steps that will better communicate our position and strengthen our policies on domestic violence and sexual assault.  

These steps are based on a clear, simple principle:  domestic violence and sexual assault are wrong.  They are illegal.  They have no place in the NFL and are unacceptable in any way, under any circumstances.  That has been and remains our policy.

Many of you have done excellent work in this field, both personally and through the efforts of concerned players and your community relations and player engagement departments.  Our goals are to prevent violence, impose appropriate discipline, provide professional support resources when appropriate, and publicly embrace a leadership role on this issue.  

Consistent with that view, I have directed the following actions to reinforce and enhance our policies:

First, we will continue our work with leading experts to expand the scope of our education on domestic violence and sexual assault for all NFL personnel – players and non-players.  This will include enhanced training for entering players through the Rookie Symposium and Rookie Success Program, as well as new programs designed for veteran players and other NFL personnel. All NFL personnel — players and non-players — will receive information about available league resources and local support and advocacy groups in their community.

Second, our club Player Engagement Directors, Human Resource Executives, and other appropriate team personnel will undergo comprehensive training to help them understand and identify risk factors associated with domestic violence and sexual assault. Any person identified as being at risk will be afforded private, confidential assistance.  Persons who decline this assistance will be held accountable for that decision in determining discipline for any subsequent act of domestic violence or sexual assault.  This is a complicated matter and must be approached with care.  We will work with experts to identify strategies based on the most reliable research, recognizing that violence can and does take different forms but generally involves a pattern of coercive behavior.  

Third, we will ensure that the NFL LifeLine and NFL Total Wellness Program are staffed with personnel trained to provide prompt and confidential assistance to anyone at risk of domestic violence or sexual assault – whether as a victim or potential aggressor.  Information regarding these resources will be furnished to all NFL personnel and their families.  Our Player Engagement Directors and Human Resource Executives will meet with team spouses and significant others to ensure that they are aware of the resources available to them as NFL family members, including the ability to seek confidential assistance through independent local resources, as well as through the club or the NFL Total Wellness Program.  In this respect, we will utilize our existing, established telephone and on-line programs, and will communicate the full range of available services to all NFL personnel and their families.

Fourth, the outside groups we met with have emphasized that the NFL can play an important role in communities throughout the nation.  Consistent with that advice, we will expand the educational components in our college, high school and youth football programs that address domestic violence and sexual assault. We will seek to create and promote programs that develop the character of the young men who play, coach or manage our game, emphasizing respect for women and appropriate ways to resolve conflicts.  Outreach efforts embodied in these programs will help young people recognize, establish and maintain healthy relationships.  In our earliest contact with young men, we can communicate our expectations, establish NFL standards of conduct, and stress the responsibility that all men have to adhere to those standards.

Fifth, we recognize that domestic violence and sexual assault are broad social issues, affecting millions of people.  We want our public role to be both constructive and effective.  In the coming months, we will explore meaningful ways to incorporate domestic violence and sexual assault awareness and prevention into our public service work.  We will do this with the assistance of responsible outside organizations and the potential participation of current and former players, coaches and families who have been affected and are willing to speak out.  Actions we take in this respect will be sensitive, thoughtful and will recognize the positive role models and high character presented by so many men in the NFL.  

Finally, and consistent with our Personal Conduct Policy, our own response to domestic violence or sexual assault incidents by NFL personnel will include new elements of evaluation, treatment and family support, as well as enhanced discipline.  We will address these issues fairly and thoughtfully, respecting the rights of all involved and giving proper deference to law enforcement and the courts.  If someone is charged with domestic violence or sexual assault, there will be a mandatory evaluation and, where professionally indicated, counseling or other specialized services.  Effective immediately, violations of the Personal Conduct Policy regarding assault, battery, domestic violence or sexual assault that involve physical force will be subject to a suspension without pay of six games for a first offense, with consideration given to mitigating factors, as well as a longer suspension when circumstances warrant.  Among the circumstances that would merit a more severe penalty would be a prior incident before joining the NFL, or violence involving a weapon, choking, repeated striking, or when the act is committed against a pregnant woman or in the presence of a child.  A second offense will result in banishment from the NFL; while an individual may petition for reinstatement after one year, there will be no presumption or assurance that the petition will be granted.  These disciplinary standards will apply to all NFL personnel.  

With very few exceptions, NFL personnel conduct themselves in an exemplary way.    But even one case of domestic violence or sexual assault is unacceptable. The reality is that domestic violence and sexual assault are often hidden crimes, ones that are under-reported and under-acknowledged.  The steps we are taking will reinforce our commitment to address this issue constructively.

In addition to focusing on domestic violence and sexual assault, we will continue to maintain strong policies regarding weapons offenses.  We are similarly working to strengthen our response to impaired driving.  We have sought – unsuccessfully – for several years to obtain the NFLPA’s agreement to more stringent discipline for DUI, including mandatory deactivation for the game immediately following an arrest and a minimum two-game suspension for a first violation of law.  We will continue to press our position on this issue in the hope of securing the union’s agreement.

There are three steps that each club should take promptly:  first, post and distribute the attached “Memorandum to All NFL Personnel” to every player under contract to your club; second, ensure that your head coach reviews the information in that notice with his staff and with all your players; and third, share this letter and the attached Memorandum with all members of your organization, including your team president, General Manager, Human Resources Executive, Security Director, and Player Engagement Director.

In the coming weeks, we will contact all clubs on further steps to be taken in support of these initiatives.  I am grateful for the thoughtful advice received from so many of you and for the support that I know you will give to this important work.

MEMORANDUM TO ALL NFL PERSONNEL

Domestic violence and sexual assault are wrong.  They are illegal.  They are never acceptable and have no place in the NFL under any circumstances.  

Our Personal Conduct Policy has long made clear that domestic violence and sexual assault are unacceptable.  We clearly must do a better job of addressing these incidents in the NFL.  And we will.

Earlier today, I sent NFL owners a letter that identified specific actions we will take to improve our response to domestic violence and sexual assault. Those actions include the following:

All NFL Personnel will participate in new and enhanced educational programs on domestic violence and sexual assault.  We will also increase our outreach to college and youth football programs.

Families will receive detailed information about available services and resources, both through the club and independent of the club.  These resources and services will be available to employees and their families on a confidential basis.

Violations of the Personal Conduct Policy regarding assault, battery, domestic violence and sexual assault that involve physical force will be subject to enhanced discipline.  A first offense will be subject to a suspension of six weeks without pay.  Mitigating circumstances will be considered, and more severe discipline will be imposed if there are aggravating circumstances such as the presence or use of a weapon, choking, repeated striking, or when the act is committed against a pregnant woman or in the presence of a child.  A second offense will result in banishment from the league; an offender may petition for reinstatement after one year but there is no assurance that the petition will be granted.  These disciplinary consequences apply to all NFL personnel.

 *   *   *   *   *

If you believe that you or someone you know may be at risk of domestic violence or other misconduct, we strongly encourage you to seek assistance through your club’s director of player engagement, human resources department, the NFL LifeLine or an independent local domestic violence resource.  Help is available and can prevent potentially tragic incidents.                                                                                                 

ROGER GOODELL
COMMISSIONER

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NFL institutes new policy on domestic violence with 6-game ban for first offense

Ray Rice Press Conference Getty Images

The NFL was roundly criticized for suspending Ravens running back Ray Rice two games under the personal conduct policy after Rice was charged with assaulting his then-fiance and current wife during an incident at an Atlantic City hotel in February.

The league was also criticized for being tone deaf in their response to the criticism, but it seems someone in the league office was paying attention. According to multiple reports, NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell sent a letter to owners on Thursday outlining much stiffer penalties for domestic violence and making the rare admission of fault by saying he screwed up when disciplining Rice.

“My disciplinary decision led the public to question our sincerity, our commitment and whether we understood the toll that domestic violence inflicts on so many families. I take responsibility both for the decision and for ensuring that our actions in the future properly reflect our values. I didn’t get it right,” Goodell wrote, per Albert Breer of NFL Media.

Under the new policy, which falls under the personal conduct policy overseen by Goodell, players would be suspended at least six games for a first offense and would face a lifetime ban for a second. The letter also specifies that the new penalties apply to all NFL personnel, not just players.

There’s still some questions to sort out about what will qualify as a first offense (and whether it will apply to cases already in progress before the adoption of the policy, like the one involving Panthers defensive end Greg Hardy) in regard to the way charges are handled in the legal system, but it’s a quick and significant turnaround from the league’s previous attempts to defend Goodell’s decision on Rice and one that brings penalties for acts of domestic violence closer to where many feel they should have been all along.

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Brady is indeed upset about Mankins trade

Brady AP

When the Patriots didn’t re-sign receiver Wes Welker in the aftermath of quarterback Tom Brady’s team-friendly deal (with a paltry $30 million to sign), someone close to Brady reportedly was enraged.  This time around, with left guard Logan Mankins abruptly traded to the Buccaneers fewer than two weeks before the start of the regular season, Brady reportedly is “very upset.”

Indeed Brady is, per a source familiar with Brady’s thinking on the topic.

While Mankins arrived after the Patriots won their third Super Bowl title, he had become one of the most important veterans on the team.  His departure makes the offensive line a little bit worse, which in turn puts a little more pressure on Brady to make it all work.

The trade arose in part from a reported unwillingness of Mankins to take a pay cut. Mankins’ refusal, as one source has speculated, possibly traces at least in part to contentious contract negotiations between the Patriots and Mankins in 2010 and 2011, which at one point included Mankins making comments about owner Robert Kraft’s integrity and the team reportedly conditioning a new contract on a public apology, which never was made.

While “The Patriot Way” routinely includes moving on from key players a year too early in lieu of doing so a year too late, a few players get the benefit of doubt.  Mankins didn’t.

Brady eventually may — unless he makes too big of a stink about key players like Mankins being dumped.

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League has no comment on report of Peterson-Jones conversation

Jones Getty Images

In response to the report that Cowboys owner Jerry Jones and Vikings running back Adrian Peterson talked about Peterson playing for the Cowboys when his time with the Vikings ends, PFT contacted both teams and the league office for comment.

The first comment has arrived.  And the first comment is that the NFL has no comment.

Often in cases of potential rules violations, the NFL will say that the matter is being investigated.  While that may be the case as to the Jones-Peterson conversation, the league isn’t saying so.  The league isn’t saying anything.

And before anyone suggests that the league will look the other way because Jones is one of the more influential owners, keep in mind that Jones received a $100,000 fine in September 2009 for talking about the CBA talks.  Also, Jones’ team lost $10 million in cap space for treating the uncapped year of 2010 as uncapped.

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Report: Peterson, Jones talked about Adrian playing in Dallas

Peterson Getty Images

Vikings running back Adrian Peterson previously has mused publicly about finishing his football career in his home state of Texas.  According to ESPN’s Outside The Lines, Peterson told Cowboys owner Jerry Jones in June that Peterson wants to end his career in Dallas.

Well, I understand, Adrian,” Jones told Peterson by phone, via Don Van Atta, Jr. of ESPN.  “I’d like that, too. . . .  Well, I love your story.  I love your daddy’s story.  I’ve always respected what you’ve been about. I’ve always been a fan of yours.”

The quotes were “recounted” as part of a Jones profile, with the kind of specificity of words and sounds which suggests that Van Atta kept good notes, or possibly even had his tape recorder running.

“Well, we’ll see what we can do, if we can make that happen,” Jones told Peterson, via ESPN. “Hmm hmm. . . .  I’d like that, too. . . .  Well, we’re talking pig Latin here, but let’s see if we can do that. . . .  We’re talking pig Latin here, but let’s see what we can do about that.  OK, Adrian, thanks.”

The term “pig Latin” most likely refers to the NFL’s tampering rule  and the reality that conversations that happened never actually happened.  Jones knows about those rules; after Peterson talked about the possibility of playing for a Texas team, Jones declined to discuss the situation.

“As a matter of fact that’s called ‘get busted’ in the NFL to be talking about somebody’s else player,” Jones told 105.3 The Fan in Dallas/Ft. Worth.

Jones didn’t talk about Peterson.  Jones talked to him.  It could prompt a complaint from the Vikings, or it could result in the NFL investigating the situation on its own.

Either way, it could be “get busted” time for Dr. Jerry Jones — and it could result in the Vikings getting some compensation back from the Cowboys, nearly 25 years after they gave up a Texas-sized truckload of picks and players in order to get running back Herschel Walker from the Cowboys in Jones’ first year of running the team.

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Browns won’t let Josh Gordon play in CFL

Gordon Getty Images

The question of whether the CFL would welcome suspended Browns receiver Josh Gordon is complicated, convoluted, and ultimately irrelevant.

As Mary Kay Cabot of the Cleveland Plain Dealer said during Thursday’s PFT Live, the Browns won’t give Gordon permission to play in Canada.  A league source tells PFT that the Browns already have informed Gordon that he won’t be permitted to take his talents to Saskatoon.  Or anywhere else in Canada.

That should end it.

Even though it would give Gordon a better support structure and despite the fact that it seems unfair to prevent a guy whose contract has been tolled from playing football due to his suspension, Gordon won’t be playing in the CFL this year.

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Peyton Manning has no complaints as he’s fined for taunting

peytontaunt AP

Broncos quarterback Peyton Manning got a rare personal foul penalty in last week’s preseason game, and now he has received a rare fine from the NFL. Manning says he’s OK with that.

Manning told Chris Mortensen of ESPN that the NFL docked him $8,268 for unsportsmanlike conduct and he will not appeal.

“I accept it. Money well spent,” Manning said.

Manning got in the face of Texans safety D.J. Swearinger after Swearinger drilled Wes Welker with a shoulder to the head, causing Welker to leave the game with a concussion. Swearinger is expected to be fined by the NFL as well.

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Calgary Stampeders want to sign Josh Gordon

Calgary Getty Images

If Josh Gordon gets permission to play in Canada, he has a suitor.

Per a league (NFL, not CFL) source, the Calgary Stampeders hold the rights to Gordon.  Per the source, the Stampeders badly want to sign him.

Whether the Stampeders can sign Gordon during his NFL suspension remains incredibly vague.  The CFL has a variety of rules that may or may not apply to a player who is under contract and suspension from the NFL.

Ultimately, like any private business, the CFL will do what it wants to do.  And since success hinges on getting people to pay for tickets and/or watch games on TV, it’s good business to find a way to get Gordon to the CFL.

If the Browns will allow it.  Ultimately, that may be the biggest impediment to Gordon playing football this year.

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Gordon asks Browns for permission to go to CFL

keep-calm-and-blame-canada

Receiver Josh Gordon is suspended from the NFL.  But that doesn’t necessarily mean he won’t be playing football this year.

Per a league source, Gordon has asked the Browns for permission to play in the CFL for the balance of the Canadian league’s season.  Permission is required because Gordon remains under contract with the Browns.

Here’s the relevant language, from paragraph 3 of the NFL Player Contract:  “Without prior written consent of the Club, Player will not play football or engage in activities related to football otherwise than for Club or engage in any activity other than football which may involve a significant risk of personal injury.”

In 2007, the Titans actually sued cornerback Pacman Jones, who wanted to do a little pro wrestling during his one-year suspension.  Jones ultimately agreed to not actually do anything that could risk injury.

But the Browns may not have the last word, if they agree to let Gordon go to the CFL.  After the Dolphins allowed then-suspended running back Ricky Williams to play for the Toronto Argonauts, the CFL reportedly adopted a policy preventing suspended NFL players from playing in the CFL.

Then again, receiver LaVon Brazill remains suspended by the NFL, and he recently joined the Toronto Arognauts’ practice squad.  Being cut by the Colts means that he needs no permission to play in Canada.  But Brazill’s NFL suspension remains in full force and effect.

So whatever the CFL’s current policy is or isn’t, it’s apparently sufficiently malleable to allow the league to do whatever it wants to do.  Why wouldn’t it want Gordon?

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