In its zealous quest to rid its ranks of the Scourge of Reefer Madness, the NFL has upheld a one-year suspension for Cleveland Browns wide receiver Josh Gordon. This suspension means that Gordon will miss the entire upcoming season, The Washington Post is reporting.
In today’s NFL, you can get suspended for two games for beating your girlfriend into unconsciousness (see this Inquisitr article), but smoking pot will not be tolerated.
Through the NFL Players Association (Gordon’s union), Gordon issued a statement, quoted by ESPN:
“I’d like to apologize to my teammates, coaches, the Cleveland Browns organization and our fans. I am very disappointed that the NFL and its hearing office didn’t exercise better discretion and judgment in my case. I would like to sincerely thank the people who have been incredibly supportive of me during this challenging time, including my family, my agent, my union, my legal team, and the Cleveland Browns staff.”
Gordon had insisted that his failed drug test was a result of secondhand marijuana smoke, according to CBS Sports. He also insisted that his samples were suspect, considering that one sample was just slightly above the NFL’s threshold for acceptable pot consumption, and one sample was well below it.
This is Gordon’s second suspension for pot in his NFL career, according to NFL.com writer Mark Sessler. He served a two-game suspension last season for violating the league’s drug policy. The fact that this is his third time failing a drug test could be a factor in the NFL coming down on him so hard.
The NFL’s slowness in handing down a decision on Gordon’s appeal has led to consternation for the Browns’ organization; according to ESPN, the uncertainty of Gordon’s future this season has made it difficult for the front office to map out their receiving corps.
Gordon”s suspension is effective immediately; he will be able to apply for reinstatement into the NFL one year from today.
Last season, Gordon set the Browns’ all-time single-season franchise record for receiving, with 1,646 receiving yards, in spite of serving a two-game suspension (for pot) at the beginning of the season. During a four-game stretch last season, Gordon had 36 receptions for 774 yards and five touchdowns, according to ESPN.
With Josh Gordon out, the Browns will to rely largely on tight end Jordan Cameron for receiving yards, and will have to expect production from their running backs, Ben Tate and rookie Terrance West.
Do you believe that Josh Gordon’s one-year suspension for smoking pot is fair? Let us know what you think in the Comments.
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