Josh Gordon was hurt in Thursday night's game against the New York Giants, hobbling to the sidelines in the second quarter in obvious pain and leaving a big hole in New England's receiving corps.
Gordon was hurt while trying to tackle New York Giants defensive end Chase Winovich, who had scooped up a fumble from Tom Brady and was running for a touchdown in the second quarter. Replays showed that Gordon's knee planted and twisted awkwardly as he tried to make the tackle. The wide receiver went immediately to the injury tent and was later seen on the sidelines and riding the stationary bike. It was not clear if he would return.
Gordon's injury came as the New England Patriots were already shorthanded. As NESN's Doug Kyed noted on Twitter, the Patriots have been hit hard by injuries and were left with little on Thursday.
"The Patriots' top three WRs are now Julian Edelman, Jakobi Meyers and Gunner Olszewski," he noted. "Josh Gordon just got hurt. Phillip Dorsett should be back soon. N'Keal Harry is eligible to return after Week 8. The Patriots could sign Maurice Harris after Week 6, per his injury settlement."
Going into halftime, the New England Patriots announced the Gordon was questionable to return to the game. The receiver had already been dealing with injury going into the game, carrying a questionable designation and coming in as a game-time decision.Though the New England Patriots have been rolling out to a 5-0 start, Josh Gordon had been going through something of a down year by his standards. Going into Thursday's game, he had 19 catches for 280 yards and one touchdown, all of which are below his career averages. The 28-year-old Gordon had a difficult path to playing this year after being suspended by the NFL in December of last year, a sanction that many thought could end his troubled career. But the Patriots stuck by Gordon and in August the wide receiver was reinstated for this season on a conditional basis.
In announcing the move, NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell said he was hoping to see the wide receiver stay on the right path and succeed.
"We are all rooting for Josh to succeed, both personally and professionally," said Goodell. "Everyone shares in that hope and will continue to support him to every extent possible. But as Josh acknowledged, ultimately his success is up to him."
The league mandated that Gordon, who had a series of other suspensions for substance abuse, take part in clinical care and other arrangements in order to be permitted to remain reinstated and take part in activities with the Patriots.
After Gordon's injury on Thursday, the Patriots will likely be forced to rely more heavily on Julian Edelman and the rushing attack of Sony Michel and James White. Conditions at the game were difficult for the passing game, with rain and wind gusts up to 25 miles per hour, which had a noticeable effect on some longer throws.
The New England Patriots have not yet announced the exact diagnosis for Josh Gordon's injury, or when he could return.