The New England Patriots' decision to release wide receiver Josh Gordon stunned many NFL fans. Gordon's sudden availability on the free agency market could prove fortunate for teams looking to add more offensive firepower to mount a playoff run - or fill seats in near-empty…
NFL teams in urgent need of help at wide receiver will receive an unexpected gift in a couple of weeks courtesy of the New England Patriots—a chance to sign Josh Gordon.
The news hit the wire on Friday that the Patriots were placing him on the IR, effectively ending his season. But then the official status came with a minor designation, which means the Patriots have to release him when he is healthy.
He is expected to be ready to return to action in a week or two.
Bill Belichick will never confirm anything, leaving fans to speculate as to why Gordon was released. It certainly seemed to catch Gordon off guard, particularly since Antonio Brown’s departure had left the Patriots with a weak receiving corps.
Maybe with the addition of Mohamed Sanu and the impending return of rookie N’Keal Harry, they don’t feel like they need him. With offensive lineman Isaiah Wynn also potentially returning soon, they need the roster space.
But then why not drop a lesser player? Who knows— but New England’s loss will be someone else’s gain since they will have to release him once he is healthy.
So, who is going to pick him up? Here are Gordon’s top five potential landing spots:
The Seattle Seahawks have been mentioned by NFL insiders as one possible destination. Tyler Lockett is the best receiver they have right now.
Tight end Will Dissly was coming along nicely until going down with a season-ending injury in Week Six. Rookie D.K. Metcalf has had some moments but is not consistent enough to be a legitimate No.2 receiver.
Raiders left tackle Trent Brown, who played with Gordon in New England, has already begun campaigning for him to join the Raiders.
The Raiders thought they had a home run guy in Antonio Brown, but that didn’t work out. With how the team has improved this season and with the Chiefs being forced to play without Patrick Mahomes for a few weeks, the right move could help them take control of the AFC West.
San Francisco was in the market for help at receiver, but the 49ers recently acquired Emmanuel Sanders from the Denver Broncos. You’d think that trade would put them out of the market, but will they be able to resist the allure of a player of Josh Gordon’s caliber?
The injury-riddled Philadelphia Eagles could use some help across the board. Carson Wentz seems to be at his best when he has a deep threat, which he hasn’t had since Week One (DeSean Jackson has been injured).
It would be interesting to see him in Kliff Kingsbury’s system in Arizona catching balls from Kyler Murray, but NFL procedures suggest that he may get stuck in Miami.
Since the Patriots are releasing him once he is healthy, which could take a couple of weeks, he will have to clear waivers before signing with whomever he wants. Teams at the bottom of the NFL standings have first priority on waiver claims.
So, the Dolphins will have the first crack at Josh Gordon. With him on the market, it is going to be even harder for Antonio Brown to find any takers.
This article was edited by Josiah Wilmoth.
Last modified: January 10, 2020 3:32 PM UTC