After a loss to the Jacksonville Jaguars on Sunday, the New England Patriots added some much-needed firepower to the wide receiver position. On Monday, it was reported that the Patriots have acquired WR Josh Gordon from the Cleveland Browns in exchange for a 2019 fifth-round pick. If Gordon is inactive for 10 games this season, New England will receive a 2019 seventh-round pick from Cleveland. With all the problems Gordon has under his belt, is he work for the risk for New England?
In 2014, which was the last time Gordon played 10+ games, he recorded 87 receptions for 1,646 receiving yards and 9 touchdowns. Despite the numbers, it went downhill after that season, with Gordon only playing 11 games since 2014 due to suspensions.
With off-the-field problems aside, Josh Gordon is a wide receiver that has upside. With his blazing speed, he is still one of the most dynamic wide receivers in the NFL.
Since losing Julian Edelman for the first four games of the season due to a suspension of his own, the Patriots wide receiving core has been lackluster and ineffective. Through the first two weeks, the most reliable receiver on the active roster has been Phillip Dorsett, which is telling.
Since trading Randy Moss to Minnesota in 2010, New England has been searching for a deep field threat. From experiments including Kenny Britt, Eric Decker, Reggie Wayne, Chad Johnson, Brandin Cooks and Michael Floyd, the addition of Josh Gordon shows potential for a real impact. In exchange for a fifth-round pick, this seems to be an absolute steal for the Patriots.
The backlash of Gordon joining New England is apparent, but the upside is overwhelming. Joining a contending franchise in the Patriots is special, but the “Patriots way” may also prove to be beneficial as well. In a low-risk, high-reward situation, there is seemingly no downside to this deal for New England.
Over the years, New England has been able to provide talented players with a troubled past with a second chance. For Josh Gordon, this could be the chapter that allows for his true potential to shine in the NFL. He is expected to suit up on Sunday night against the Detroit Lions.