Browns use “did not report” list for Josh Gordon to provide roster flexibility

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The decision of the Browns to place receiver Josh Gordon on the “did not report” list instead of the non-football illness list gave a vaguely ominous situation yet another layer of ambiguity. According to the Browns, however, the decision was rooted in one factor only: Roster flexibility.

While Gordon is on the “did not report” list, he won’t count toward the 90-man roster. If he were on the non-football illness list, Gordon would consume a roster spot.

Also, it’s possible the Browns couldn’t have placed Gordon on the non-football illness list if they wanted to, since he would have had to show up and fail a physical before being placed on active/NFI. Literally, he did not report for camp. So he’s on the “did not report” list.

Per a league source, Gordon’s return to the active roster won’t be automatic. He’ll have to make a written request for reinstatement to the Browns, and the Commissioner will have to approve it.

At this point, there’s no reason to think the Browns wouldn’t welcome him back, or that the Commissioner would block his return. That said, the Commissioner retains broad discretion on the question of whether Gordon has in any way violated the specific terms of his treatment plan under the substance-abuse policy, which by rule would subject him to another suspension of at least one year.

There continues to be no specific reason to believe that Gordon will be suspended again, notwithstanding the league’s arguably loaded comment that it will address Gordon’s status “at the appropriate time.” Perhaps the league’s comment refers simply to the fact that, because he did not report for camp, the Commissioner at some point will be asked to affirmatively approve his return to the active roster.

4 responses to “Browns use “did not report” list for Josh Gordon to provide roster flexibility

  1. Mayhaps privacy concerns are actually being considered especially after the Edelman news somehow leaked out. Making a huge production out of the treatment of a person who has finally admitted to a problem and sought treatment isn’t a good look for the league.

  2. Gordon looking for loop holes but Goodell won’t be shown up. One year ban with indefinite return.

  3. The Browns may as well move on without him. Chances that he comes back is not very promising.

  4. Sources close to Goodell have have said Gordon has told him he wants out of Cleveland.

    I suspect Goodell would like him out of Cleveland, too, for the benefit of the leage.

    Browns are in the driver seat, though. Let Josh Gordon be absent as long as he wants to be; just don’t cut him. If Gordon digs his own grave, he doesn’t get paid, at which point he’s just another guy who didn’t have the mental toughness to play in the NFL. There are plenty of them. Gordon will just be the latest.

    Dorsey realizes that the worse scenario is he cuts Gordon, and Gordon thrives with another team from day 1.

    Dorsey isn’t stupid. He won’t release Gordon. Gordon will play for the Browns, or he won’t play. Ever.

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