We still don’t know if Josh Gordon is going to see an NFL field next season, but we at least now know that if he does, it will be with the New England Patriots again.
Gordon has officially signed a restricted free-agent tender with the Patriots, according to ESPN’s Field Yates. The tender was reported in March to be an original-round tender.
Source: Patriots WR Josh Gordon has officially signed his restricted free agent tender. While he’s uncertain to play in 2019, this ensures that if he plays anywhere, it’ll be in New England.
— Field Yates (@FieldYates) April 23, 2019
Per Spotrac, the tender is worth $2.025 million, though that number doesn’t account for games the talent but troubled receiver is suspended.
Patriots have stood by Josh Gordon
Gordon’s football career returned to a state of limbo last season when he was suspended for the fifth time of his career, this time indefinitely, for multiple violations of the NFL’s substance abuse policy. Right before the suspension hit, Gordon announced he was stepping away to focus on his mental health.
Despite another very public fall from Gordon, the Patriots signaled they were standing by him when they placed the tender on him in March. That reportedly allowed Gordon to remain under the team’s medical umbrella.
The Patriots have actively supported Gordon’s mental health and substance abuse treatment since his suspension. They clearly want to see him able to return to playing, and the feeling is apparently mutual.
Expect Gordon to apply for reinstatement soon. He clearly wants to come back. From team perspective, can't plan on it but would welcome a healthy Gordon in the offense. https://t.co/Q1qI3KJgMS
— Nora Princiotti (@NoraPrinciotti) April 23, 2019
How much do the Patriots need Josh Gordon?
In Gordon’s absence, the Patriots did just fine by capturing their sixth Super Bowl, for which Gordon received a ring.
The team has since bolstered its thin wide receiver corps a bit with the addition of veteran receiver Demaryius Thomas, but still saw a massive loss in the receiving game when Rob Gronkowski retired. Clearly, there would be targets for Gordon if he ever returned.
We still don’t know when the NFL will ever allow Gordon to play again, but at least it appears the player and team are moving in the right direction for that date.
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