The Cleveland Browns will have Josh Gordon on the field for the first time since 2014, giving them a real playmaker on the outside.
Cleveland hasn’t won a game since Week 16 of last year, when the Browns pulled off the football equivalent of a football miracle and beat the San Diego Chargers. This week, the Browns are taking on the Los Angeles Chargers, and they’ll have an extra weapon in the arsenal.
On Thursday night, the Browns officially moved wide receiver Josh Gordon off the Commissioner’s Exempt list after being suspended for almost three full seasons, allowing him to become active immediately. Gordon will play this weekend in Los Angeles, giving DeShone Kizer his best chance to finally collect some decent offensive statistics and a win.
Gordon has not played a game in the NFL since Dec. 21, 2014, when the Browns lost on the road against the Carolina Panthers. Gordon was taken in the 2012 NFL Supplemental draft by Cleveland in the second round out of the University of Baylor. In his rookie campaign, Gordon caught 50 passes for 805 yards. After a two-game suspension to start the 2013 campaign, Gordon still managed to lead the league in receiving yardage with 1,646 and nine touchdowns.
If there was any questions to whether Gordon would start or playing in a supporting role in his first action back, head coach Hue Jackson left nothing to the imagination, per ESPN:
“Am I comfortable saying [he will start]? Heck yeah,” Jackson said. “Are you kidding me? Yeah he’s gonna start, right away.”
Cleveland must hope that Gordon can stay away from the substance abuse issues that have haunted his career to this point. If he does, the Browns pick up one of the league’s best talents and still at only 26 years of age.