Josh Gordon didn’t get to play in Super Bowl 53 with the New England Patriots and his current teammates. But that didn’t keep him from celebrating a bit by showing some love to quarterback Tom Brady. Gordon, who was acquired by the Patriots early in the season, is away from the team after his big decision came to light in December.
Gordon revealed on social media that he would be stepping away from the game in order to focus on his mental health. The decision was followed up shortly after by an indefinite suspension from the NFL for violating the terms of reinstatement under the league’s substance abuse policy.
“I take my mental health very seriously at this point to ensure I remain able to perform at the highest level. I have recently felt like I could have a better grasp on things mentally. With that said, I will be stepping away from the football field for a bit to focus on my mental health. I would like to thank Coach Belichick, Mr. Kraft, as well as countless others within the Patriots organization or their continued support. I want to thanks my fans for their support as well as I continue down the path getting back to 100%.” Gordon wrote.
After the Patriots’ 13-3 win over the Los Angeles Rams in the 2019 Super Bowl, Gordon took to social media to post a message to Brady and his teammates.
Josh Gordon’s Instagram Post After Patriots Win
The 27-year-old wideout revealed a picture of himself with Brady and a trophy emoji which said: “Big & shiny, just like you said.”
It’s a great message from Gordon, who played in 11 games with the Patriots this season. Over that span, Gordon hauled in 40-of-68 passes for 720 yards and three touchdowns. Aside from a tough Week 15 showing against the Pittsburgh Steelers, the wideout topped 50 yards in the five games prior while catching two touchdowns in that span.
Gordon’s Return to Patriots Possible, Will Receive Super Bowl Ring
Ahead of the Super Bowl, NESN’s Doug Kyed revealed that a “return to the Patriots is still possible” for Gordon. Beyond that, he also cited that the receiver will receive a Super Bowl ring from his team’s victory over the Rams.
As far as a return to the field goes, NFL.com’s Ian Rapoport detailed the current situation by reporting that Gordon wants to play, but that recovery is his priority. He called it an “uphill battle” before the receiver can return to the field, and cited that it’s unknown when Gordon may apply for reinstatement but believes he could be ready by training camp.
The NFL and NFLPA, as part of their joint drug program agreement, are facilitating and arranging Gordon’s treatment, and there is no exit date yet for when he would leave rehab. The hope is that it’s relatively soon.
Then, Gordon will train in Florida, while also staying in contact with his doctors and doing his treatment. Gordon’s goal, of course, is reinstatement, but it’s still not yet clear when he would apply. Based on the timing, being ready for training camp is a possibility.
The obvious focus remains on Gordon’s health off the field, and it seems that he’s taking steps forward, which is certainly great to see.