Josh Gordon: How WR Will Fare in Week 7 Given Browns' Injuries
Gordon was a wild card with loads of talent but also loads of disciplinary issues in his past, one of which led to his dismissal from Baylor. It was hard to tell whether he was a risk worth taking, but the Browns bit the bullet anyway.
Over the past couple of weeks, Cleveland has looked very smart for doing so.
The supplemental draft pick has come up pretty big for the Browns in their last two games, compiling 82 yards and two touchdowns against the Giants, then 99 yards and a score against the Bengals a week later.
Now, the questions become: Can he keep it up? And should you take a chance on him?
There are a couple of things working in Gordon's favor as the Browns prepare to take on the Colts. One is that he appears to have a solid relationship with quarterback Brandon Weeden, which is likely to continue paying off for both the Browns and for fantasy owners daring enough to take a gamble on Gordon.
This week, Weeden told The Cleveland Plain Dealer's Bill Livingston:
He's a guy with the ability to run past a [defender]. He's a long guy who's a huge mismatch for safeties. He's come a long way and is more comfortable now.
In Gordon, Weeden knows he has a weapon. And Gordon is a weapon Weeden is likely to look to even more this weekend, when Cleveland's primary offensive gem—Trent Richardson—is likely to be limited, if he plays at all.
Richardson suffered an abdomen injury in last week's 34-24 win over the Bengals when he took a helmet to the rib cage, and even though the injury doesn't appear to be significant, Richardson's status for Week 7 is still "uncertain," accordion to The Plain Dealer's Tom Reed.
All of which could translate into more work and more opportunities for Gordon.
But unfortunately for the Browns—and for anyone thinking of picking up Gordon this week—the Colts aren't the ideal opponent for him to continue to thrive against.
When Weeden is gunning for a big play, he's looking to Gordon. Maybe—given the possibility that reliable old Richardson may not be as available as usual—he'll go to Gordon for more than a few deep passes this week. Maybe Gordon will get more opportunities to show us that he can do more than haul in a touchdown bomb every once in a while.
But more than likely, the Colts won't allow Gordon many opportunities for a big play. Their pass defense ranks third in the league, and it held the Jets—however stagnant they've been recently—to just 99 yards in the air.
This would be the perfect week for the Browns to focus on the running game, and for Trent Richardson to dominate. But Richardson may not be able to go, and that's that.
Will Gordon's magic last forever? Maybe. Maybe not. It's still too soon to tell.
Perhaps the magic will continue post-Colts. But for now, it's best to hold off on the Gordon-related enthusiasm, at least for another week.
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