A ProFootballTalk.com report Monday night said that Cleveland Browns wide receiver Josh Gordon has not had an appeal heard regarding his reported impeding suspension for another violation of the NFL’s substance abuse policy.
The report says an appeal has not even been scheduled.
The Browns have been playing the waiting game since the news that Gordon faces a possible indefinite suspension first broke during the NFL Draft in May, and it’s at the very least strange — and probably unfair to the Browns — that a verdict has not been handed down.
Gordon is a game-changing playmaker on a team trying to develop an offensive identity. He’s also on his third head coach in three years and seems to have a real problem passing drug tests, but his talent is undeniable.
Gordon led the NFL in receiving yards last season despite playing with three different quarterbacks and missing two games due to suspension — a suspension that was cut in half by an appeal.
Per NFL rules, an appeal must be heard before a suspension would be handed down. If Gordon gets an indefinite suspension, he’d be immediately barred from the Browns facility and team activities. Under last year’s suspension — and most suspensions shorter than a season — he was able to participate in training camp.
There’s still so much uncertainty regarding what’s going on, probably because anything involving the league’s substance abuse program is confidential. Various reports have also stated that it’s possible Gordon could only be suspended six or eight games. An indefinite suspension would be at least a year, and Gordon would have to be reinstated by NFL Commissioner Roger Goodell.
The news that an appeal has not been scheduled should also quell the thought that the longer this process plays out, the better the news could potentially be for Gordon and the Browns. A theory that’s gained at least a little traction via Twitter and Cleveland sportstalk radio says that the Browns being more than 10 days past the end of their offseason program with no Gordon ruling could mean the NFL is at least considering his appeal or shortening his potential suspension.
If no appeal is even scheduled, that can’t be true.
This saga — and it’s definitely that considering Gordon’s importance to the Browns and their perpetual quest to climb out of the AFC North’s basement — is apparently going to continue.