"One league source speculated that perhaps Gordon hasn't shown the NFL enough of a commitment to his sobriety. Gordon has maintained from the beginning that he's not an addict and spent two weeks at an inpatient addiction center in 2014, where he says they told him he was not one," reported Mary Kay Cabot of Cleveland.com on April 9.
In 2013, Gordon led the NFL in receiving yards with 1,646 despite missing two games while serving a suspension. The NFL then suspended him for the entire 2014 season for violating the same substance-abuse policy, but the suspension was eventually reduced to 10 games.
Then-Cleveland general manager Ray Farmer released a statement when the NFL again suspended Gordon in 2015, per Chris Wesseling of NFL.com:
As we have conveyed, we are disappointed to once again be at this point with Josh. Throughout his career we have tried to assist him in getting support like we would with any member of our organization. Unfortunately our efforts have not resonated with him.
It is evident that Josh needs to make some substantial strides to live up to the positive culture we are trying to build this football team upon. Our hope is that this suspension affords Josh the opportunity to gain some clarity in determining what he wants to accomplish moving forward and if he wants a career in the National Football League. We will have no further comment on Josh as he will not be permitted in our facility for the duration of his suspension.
The 24-year-old is one of the most talented receivers in the NFL but has had trouble staying on the field. He took to Twitter on Feb. 12 and may have alluded to a possible return:
The Browns are coming off a three-win season and face uncertainty at quarterback. They have the No. 2 selection in the 2016 draft and have expressed interest in taking a signal-caller in the first round. That quarterback would love to have Gordon in the fold at some point.