Josh Gordon: Why Fantasy Owners Must Immediately Add Browns WR

Timothy RappFeatured ColumnistOctober 17, 2012

CLEVELAND, OH - OCTOBER 14:  Wide receiver Josh Gordon #13 of the Cleveland Browns catches a touchdown pass in front of safety Reggie Nelson of the Cincinnati Bengals at Cleveland Browns Stadium on October 14, 2012 in Cleveland, Ohio.  (Photo by Matt Sullivan/Getty Images)
Matt Sullivan/Getty Images

I honestly didn't think I would recommend that you add any of the Cleveland Browns' wide receivers to your fantasy roster this year. There appeared to be a dearth of talent at the position and, you know, the whole Brandon Weeden thing factored in as well.

Alas, Josh Gordon has changed my mind.

The rookie has been fantastic in the past two weeks, with 35 combined fantasy points. In total, he's logged five receptions for 181 yards and three touchdowns over those two games after managing just seven catches for 93 yards and no touchdowns in the first four games.

Now, I know you see the danger here. Any time a player has just 12 receptions and 26 targets in six games, he presents a risk to fantasy owners since all of his value is coming from touchdowns.

And every fantasy owner knows that touchdowns are fickle mistresses.

Plus, Travis Benjamin and Mohamed Massaquoi were both sidelined again this week. When each returns, will Gordon still have a big role in this offense?

Yes, I think he will—there is serious upside here, folks. Gordon is a rookie, so there was always the possibility he was going to start slowly this season as he learned the offense. Plus, he represents something we haven't seen in Cleveland for quite some time:

A legitimate deep threat.

I can't imagine the Browns will suddenly decide to phase out the exciting young rookie. And I can't imagine why you wouldn't want to start Gordon at your flex against the Indianapolis Colts this week.

Yes, the Colts give up just 200 passing yards per week (third in the NFL) and are much more vulnerable against the run. However, the Colts have been good to wideouts in fantasy terms, allowing 27.2 fantasy points per week to opposing wide receivers (25th in NFL), including nine touchdowns.

Plus, Gordon is a "one-play day" guy in the mold of Mike Wallace or DeSean Jackson (well, at least Jackson used to be in that mold). All it takes is one long touchdown pass for Gordon to make your investment valuable.

I'm not telling you Gordon is suddenly going to morph into Victor Cruz. But I am saying that if you need depth at wide receiver and are willing to take your chances with a Browns receiver, Gordon is a smart buy this weekend.

He's changed my mind, at least.


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