With the talk about Josh Gordon re-surfacing yesterday, we thought we’d put all of our thoughts together on the topic. We’ve all had a night to sleep on it and some time to consider all of our thoughts. So here’s the Josh Gordon Roundtable.
Craig: Do you even believe the Josh Gordon rumors? Isn’t this round of rumors just a timing thing where the Browns probably talked to the 49ers before he came back from suspension like what was reported earlier? Obviously, the downside risks with Gordon are real because of his off-field issues and status in the league’s substance program. Is there any compensation that’s good enough to justify trading him right now for you?
Rick: I don’t know how you couldn’t believe the Gordon rumors. Let’s face it, we shouldn’t be surprised by anything the Browns do at this point. Also, there has to be something to the fact that Lombardi’s NFL Network co-worker Ian Rapoport had some of the information.
It is hard to say on the timing of this round of rumors. Could very well have happened prior to Gordon’s return, but is there any way to tell?
I am not opposed to trading Gordon, but I prefer these kinds of trades to happen before or after the season. Just as with the Trent Richardson trade, I fear what kind of message this sends to the team and the fans. Also, trading him in the off-season gives you a chance to replace him. Right now there is no replacement for Gordon on the roster, and I doubt there is anything in free agency that is better than what we already have.
Are you ready for Greg Little ‘feature receiver’? Me neither.
Craig: Rick, are you forgetting that the Browns re-signed Josh Cooper to the practice squad?
Scott: When there’s smoke, there’s fire.
There’s a fine line between motivation—the whole keeping guys on their toes cliché—and building an environment of distrust. Trading Gordon in the midst of a three-game winning streak when he has been integral in each win borders on the latter.
As I’ve said all along, these guys aren’t commodities. A 6-4 receiver with Gordon’s quickness and ability to move in right spaces is a rarity that’s only afforded to few. Had Gordon not had these substance abuse issues, he would’ve never found his way to Cleveland.
Given that he’s a franchise receiver, at least for *this* franchise, it’d take a first- and third-round pick for me to even consider moving him. Players with his skill set don’t grow on trees (no pun intended). Moving him would be criminal.
Jacob: Tom Reed and others said it best on Twitter last night: There isn’t any harm in talking. Anyone is available at the right price. And I really mean anyone: If Trent Richardson was traded, what’s truly holding back Banner from finding a perfect price for Haden or Thomas? Doesn’t mean he will, but he obviously isn’t making moves based on fan’s opinions.
Josh Gordon has had a very good start to his career, don’t get me wrong. But he’s also only started 16 games and is one false move away from a one-year suspension. I’d rather have him playing for my team than any other team; but he’s not exactly a true blue-chipper.
Ben: I believe the Gordon-to-Niners rumors as much as I believe any nationally reported trade scenario. We’ll know if it’s true when the trade happens. Speculation is all we have. Gordon has been an absolute beast, so I imagine that Banner and co are fielding more calls after his hot start.
The suspension and potential future suspension *has* to play a major part of the Browns’ mindset. If they really do think Gordon is going to relapse and they’ll be without their best receiver, it makes sense that they’d try to cash in (middle of a three game winning streak or no).
Also, I find trading the guy with the pot problem to hippie dippie San Francisco is kind of hilarious.
I’d prefer the Browns keep Gordon, but if they do flip him, I’d like a first rounder and at least one other lower round pick. If Trent Richardson and his no good, very bad yards-per-carry average is worth a first, then the guy who actually produces on the field should be worth a little bit more.
Andrew: I don’t know how much I believe it. I tend not to believe too much in the media when it comes to trade rumors. But there seems to be something to this. It really feels like the Browns are actively trying to trade Gordon, and that infuriates me.
I was 100% behind the Richardson trade. I loved it at the time, and I love it even more today. But trading Gordon makes no sense to me. You can’t just find receivers of Gordon’s caliber. The reason I loved the Richardson deal is because I felt he was a replacement level RB at best. Gordon is way more than a replacement level WR.
Like Scott, I need at least a 1st and a 3rd to feel ok with trading Gordon. I know he’s had his problems and I’m afraid he will have future problems. But I think taking that risk is better than taking a 2nd round pick, which is what the Browns are rumored to be seeking. I hate everything about this rumor. I hope it stays as just that, a rumor, and never becomes a reality.