When the Patriots traded for Josh Gordon from Cleveland in September, they did it with an eye on the wide receiver perhaps being the final piece to the offense in an attempt to make it back to the Super Bowl.
And while the Patriots did return to the Super Bowl once again, Gordon is instead serving another ban for violating his terms of reinstatement to the NFL.
Still, that doesn’t mean Gordon’s time with New England is necessarily over, according to NESN.com.
The website reported Tuesday that as the Patriots prepare to face the Rams in the Super Bowl in Atlanta on Sunday, Gordon is still getting treatment at an inpatient facility in Gainesville, Fla. The Patriots are paying for Gordon to take part in the program, although they declined comment on the situation.
New England is working alongside the league and the NFLPA to help Gordon, who has battled mental health and substance abuse issues throughout his career.
He was forced to sit out two full seasons due to suspensions and played in just 11 games for Cleveland from 2014 to 2018. Gordon was conditionally reinstated by the league in November 2017 and appeared in five games with the Browns that season.
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After playing one game with the Browns this season and then suffering a hamstring injury during a photo shoot, Gordon was traded to the Patriots.
He caught 40 passes for 720 yards and three touchdowns with New England and became a favorite target for Tom Brady, but was suspended indefinitely again last month shortly after announcing he was stepping away from football to focus on his mental health.
The 27-year-old was the Browns’ second-round pick in 2012 and led the league in receiving yards a year later.
Despite Gordon’s short time with the Patriots, NESN.com reported he would receive a Super Bowl ring if they beat the Rams, and a return to the team in the future is not out of the question.