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Josh Gordon Eyes NFL Comeback After Suspension: 'There's No Quit in Me'

Joseph Zucker@@JosephZuckerFeatured ColumnistMarch 23, 2021

Seattle Seahawks wide receiver Josh Gordon (10) sets up against the Carolina Panthers during the second half of an NFL football game in Charlotte, N.C., Sunday, Dec. 15, 2019. (AP Photo/Brian Blanco)
Brian Blanco/Associated Press

Wide receiver Josh Gordon is looking to return to an NFL field in 2021 after missing all of last season while suspended by the league.

"There's no quit in me, at least I'm thankful for that, and knowing how to get back on track has been my strong suit," he said on The Adam Schefter Podcast. "What has been deemed once my weakness I can credit for helping me move forward in life."

The NFL conditionally reinstated Gordon in December, thus allowing him to suit up for the final two games of the season. However, the league reversed its decision weeks later when he failed to complete the full terms of his reinstatement:

Bob Condotta @bcondotta

Per source, Josh Gordon and the Seahawks were notified today that he has not satisfied all terms of his conditional reinstatement. He may attend team meetings and individual workouts but he is ineligible at this time to participate in practices or games.

Tom Pelissero @TomPelissero

#Seahawks WR Josh Gordon had a setback in his battle with substance abuse and now won’t be allowed to practice or play indefinitely, per sources. As @bcondotta reported, the NFL informed the team this morning Gordon hadn't complied with terms of his conditional reinstatement.

The 29-year-old was placed back on an indefinite suspension in January, the sixth time he has been suspended by the NFL. He has made just 63 career appearances since entering the NFL in 2012.

Gordon told GQ's Clay Skipper in November 2017 he would have described himself as a "highly functioning" alcoholic during his first few years with the Cleveland Browns. He also explained how he used Xanax, marijuana and codeine to deal with "a lot of childhood and adolescent trauma-based fear."

The new CBA between the NFL and NFL Players Association removed the threat of a possible suspension for testing positive for a substance of abuse. Players such as Gordon who had been suspended under the old CBA didn't immediately become eligible to return, though.

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In the wake of his most recent punishment, some wondered whether Gordon's playing days are over. Earlier this month, he suited up for the Zappers in the Fan Controlled Football league.

The 2013 All-Pro expressed to Schefter a desire to remain around the game, even if he isn't playing.

"I know I have a lot to offer, a lot of knowledge about the game and a lot of experience," he said. "I'm not going to tarnish that or throw that away and disrespect myself."

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