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Saturday, July 5, 2014
Josh Gordon continues disturbing pattern

By Pat McManamon


Former Cleveland Browns linebacker D'Qwell Jackson might have said it best.

Shortly after news broke that former teammate Josh Gordon had been arrested for DWI in Raleigh, North Carolina, early Saturday morning, Jackson posted the following on Twitter:

If you're close to Josh Gordon please help this kid, it's not about football anymore it's about picking up the pieces of his life.

— D'Qwell Jackson (@DQ52) July 5, 2014

Clearly there are some issues with Gordon that have yet to be resolved, issues that very well could derail, what after two seasons had the makings of a potential Hall of Fame career.

Instead of discussing Gordon as one of the greatest receivers ever, he could wind up as the story of the guy who destroyed his own future.

The latest 2014 offseason incident occurred when Gordon was pulled over at 3 a.m. for speeding, then arrested for driving while impaired. Why he was in Raleigh is anyone’s guess. Earlier in the week, Gordon had posted on his Instagram account that he had to get out of Miami.

This arrest follows an arrest in May when he was pulled over for speeding and a passenger had marijuana with him, and a report during the draft that Gordon faced a minimum one-year ban for failing a drug test. That follows a four-game suspension last season, reduced to two and two without pay. That follows his failed drug tests at Baylor and Utah that led to him declaring for the supplemental draft in 2012.

His looming one-year ban is being appealed, with a hearing set for late July, according to Pro Football Talk.

But given all that’s happened this offseason, expecting any sympathy from the league would be foolish. He clearly has problems, but he has done what he’s done knowing the consequence of his actions.

His actions since his positive test convey little attention to his reality. It almost seems as though he knows he’s not going to win on appeal, so he’ll do whatever he wants to do.

And it doesn’t seem as though he cares how it affects his team or his teammates. He says it does, but the old phrase about actions being louder than words comes to mind.

The Browns know what his loss will do to the offense, and the loss will be immense. It will hurt the offense and the quarterbacks, and it will slow the development of rookie quarterback Johnny Manziel.

Losing a playmaker does that.

Losing a playmaker of the magnitude of Gordon does that in significant ways.

Whether Gordon has a problem, is defiant, is associating with the wrong people or is an addict is for him to determine and, with the appropriate help, come to grips with.

Players have overcome addictions and become excellent players. Former receiver Irving Fryar went from being a serious addict to an inspiration on and off the field.

The problem, though, is that Gordon is showing no signs whatsoever of taking any step in that direction.

And while he avoids doing so, he hurts himself and also hurts the people most trying to support him.