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Instant Analysis – Gordon to the Browns (Updated)

In a somewhat surprising but not completely unexpected move, the enigmatic Josh Gordon was selected by the Browns in the second round of the NFL supplemental draft.  With their selection, Cleveland now loses their 2013 second round pick.

At 6’3″ and 224 pounds, Gordon has the measurable size to be an intriguing rookie.  Expected to run the forty in the low 4.4s, some even projecting high 4.3s, Gordon’s 4.52 effort at Tuesday’s Pro Day left some disappointed as to his upside.  Most, however, believe he plays faster than his timed speed and given his size, could be a WR1 given time.

The Browns are in dire need for weapons at receiver and given the names on the roster, Gordon could be given every opportunity to see the field sooner than would be normally expected.  The consistently underwhelming Mohamed Massoquoi and the drop-prone Greg Little as the Browns’ current starting receivers don’t elicit much long term excitement or promise in the eyes of some, though Little still obviously still has tremendous upside in the eyes of others.

As for other receivers on the Browns, not much changes.  Gordon will come in at the bottom of the depth chart and may even ultimately remain on the practice squad his first year.  But with a second round pick now being spent, Gordon is certain to stick.

Lest we further add to the hype train that is already out of control, let’s make a few things perfectly clear.  At 20 years of age, Gordon is extremely young.  Gordon has failed at least one drug test (marijuana).  And, perhaps most importantly, he’s only had a single full college season of production and hasn’t played since 2010.   Bigger, faster and more experienced receivers coming from college have entered and exited the NFL without ever seeing the field.  Gordon is no guarantee to ever develop.

To his credit, however, he’s addressed his transgressions openly and honestly and has vowed to leave the old Josh Gordon in the past.  While the old Gordon may exist behind him, the new Gordon has to find a way to become a NFL receiver without the foundation typically needed to be successful.  Odds are against him.

As to Gordon’s value in rookie drafts, expect him to be selected in the third round near other such names as Marvin Jones, Greg Childs and perhaps even A.J. Jenkins.  If your draft is over, you have some choices to make – the first thing you need to do is check your league’s waiver wire rules as we’ve suggested all week.

If he’s available on a first come, first served basis, pick him up now basically free of charge. That’s an easy one.

If your league runs waivers where you have bidding dollars, this is more complicated. Much of the hype surrounding Gordon is inevitably due to the slow news in the NFL right now, but he’s still been taken very high and gone to a team where he’ll be expected to compete for playing time. It’s not inconceivable to think the Browns have to be thinking Gordon and Greg Little could be their starting receivers of the future. While we wouldn’t be blowing all our preseason dollars on him, we’d certainly be looking at using half of them if our team is really needy at the position.

If your league holds a supplemental draft where you could use one of your 2013 rookie picks to bid on Gordon, we’d certainly consider throwing out a bid of a future third round selection. If you’re a sure-fire competing team with a relatively low chance of finishing near the bottom of the league, we’d even consider bidding a second round choice for him, but I’d have to be nearly certain that pick won’t land in the low teens or the risk may be too much.

Gordon has a lot of risk associated with him and the hype on him is a little too much right now. However, he does have the size and speed combination to become a true outside threat. He also now finds himself on a team where he could find playing time almost immediately.

Josh Gordon may have used up his fifteen minutes of fame during what has been a minor media circus these past two weeks.  His true value should be much less than will be seen in rookie drafts to follow.  But after watching a bit of Gordon, there is something to the player that we find intriguing, he does appear to have that “it” factor.

Regardless of how you slice it, Josh Gordon is a long shot to produce in the NFL.  But that doesn’t mean he isn’t an intriguing addition to your team.   And besides, don’t most coaches like a long shot.

How lucky do you feel?

** UPDATE:  It appears that the Browns are so smitten with Gordon that they believe he’s their “future WR1 in time” and will play a “significant role as a rookie”.  Additionally, other teams had interest in Gordon so there is little way he’d now slip through to the practice squad.  With the most recent news out of Cleveland regarding management’s view of Gordon, he’ll be screaming up draft boards.  Good luck out there!

Jeff Haverlack
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Luke
9 years ago

Would take him over sanu and jones.

sean l
9 years ago

seems like the best possible spot to get on the field early and play in an offense that will be playing from behind nearly every week. I see know difference between his situation and michael floyds or blackmons…question marks for all.

Rp
9 years ago

No difference at all compared to floyd and blackman asides frome being clear cut starters and a year away from football.

Little had that same yr away from football problem and youve seen the focus issues. Id rather let someone else house him for a yr. or 2 on their roster before I reach worse than the Browns did.

Joshua White
9 years ago

I took him in the 20th round of a startup after the buzz started to build. I would have liked to have seen him go to the Colts instead of the Browns though.

Daniel Malone
9 years ago

You really think they could hide him on the practice squad?

sean l
Reply to  Jeff Haverlack
9 years ago

dont step out on a limb there jeff….lol….i think it was pretty clear other teams had interest

Brian
Reply to  Jeff Haverlack
9 years ago

No team ever trys to sneak a second round pick to the practice squad. It just doesn’t happen.

sixshooter
Reply to  Brian
9 years ago

Was thinking the same thing when I read that. Not sure that move wouldn’t make history even if he was a supplemental pick this year.

sean l
9 years ago

as far as blackmon and floyd, are they really clear cut starters and are there fantasy situations that different that gordons? kolb/skelton or gabbert/henne? weeden has proven nothing but neither have those guys and the year off didnt seem to hurt little that much…..he had 60 plus catches if i remember correctly. bottom line, the browns say he will be on the field…something the cardinals or jaguars have yet to say about blackmon and floyd. Im not saying break the bank to get him, but i see plenty of similarities between his situation and most of the other early round wrs from this past draft.

Joe Roads
Reply to  sean l
9 years ago

I looked for him this morning in my leagues player pool and he hadn’t been added yet. I’m not saying that I would have added him to my roster but, I was definetly considering it. I just logged into my league’s site a few minutes ago and saw that the co-commish snagged him! I guess he was added to the player pool after I had already searched for him. Now that I missed out on getting Josh Gordon I can’t help but hope that he doesn’t amount to anything special or I’ll be awfully disappointed that I missed out on picking him up.

Jim
Reply to  Joe Roads
9 years ago

This is exactly why every league, especially dynasty leagues, should ALWAYS have some sort of waiver process for new/added players. It’s ridiculous that the acquisition of potential impact players — and by extension the competitive balance of the league — comes down to who can get to their league site first.

Reply to  Joe Roads
9 years ago

Sorry, Joe. I actually had forgotten about him, then checked in right before 3 PM. He wasn’t there, but I knew Flea makes changes at the top of the hour. Checked in at 3:01 and there he was. I don’t like the FCFS system in that league, either. Wanted to have a waivers system, but Allen prefers FCFS.

chris h
Reply to  sean l
9 years ago

oh come one now sambo. you are going to say the potential for a kid in the supplemental is comparable to that of the best two wr in the draft? sounds like you are from waco or have read way too much the last week. gabbert/garrard/kolb/skelton all have experience and at least a decent wr playing opposite the rookie. let’s not get out of control, i say yes risk a 3rd or 4th on him, but look what sanu, et. al. did in school and tell me why gordon is comparable to the top two wr’s and not the arkansas duo who can be had in the 3rd?

Brian Meyer
9 years ago

the Browns were going nowhere with their current compliment of WR so Gordon’s addition and significant vote of confidence post-draft can only mean good things for the organization and FF owners alike barring a return to the weed. He’s unproven and has less experience than most drafted WR but having already made his share of mistakes by age 20 should make him even more determined to prove others wrong knowing he’s not going to get another opportunity like this. He’s been in trouble and matured in the process hoping he could hit the restart button to pick up where he left off before making bad choices @ Baylor….given time I think his determination will allow him to do just that. Above all else the Browns don’t really have anyone else from that position talented enough to keep him from getting starter-level snaps as a rookie so in that respect he may even be on par with Blackmon in terms of first-year impact.

Ray Voeller
9 years ago

His wonderlic score was impressive… Don’t know if that means anything but at the very least it’s better than a poor score.

Reply to  Ray Voeller
9 years ago

If he keeps his head on straight, he has all the potential in the world. Unfortunately, that’s a sizeable if.

Jeff Haverlack
Reply to  Ray Voeller
9 years ago

He supposedly scored in the normal range for quarterbacks

Toby Miller
9 years ago

This seems to boost the value of Brandon Weeden in rookie drafts. Agree?

Rp
Reply to  Toby Miller
9 years ago

Barely – Well he is at least a lock for me ahead of Tannehill.

Figure, I at least KNOW how bad the WRs are in Miami and theres no 3 headed monster at qb. Only a 2 headed one in Cleveland

Chris R.
9 years ago

I highly disagree with him being worth only a future 3rd round pick. Just doesn’t make sense to me. So Greg Little can come out after missing a year of football and changing positions recently from RB, with a stem off of the field issues, and go smack in the middle of the 1st round. Yet Gordon, who is by all accounts a much superior prospect to Little and already has the stamp of approval from the coaching staff to be the future WR1, is only worth a future 3rd, which is basically a 4th round value.

What am I missing here? Nobody is saying he’s guaranteed to be a stud, because he has a bunch of reasons to temper expectations, but there is no reason to under value him either just because he came from the supplemental draft.

Admin
Reply to  Chris R.
9 years ago

To me, I’m comfortable with that third round designation and would also be fine with a second as well. I certainly wouldn’t go anywhere near a first round pick because you never know where that may land.

Gordon has great measureables, but you can’t ignore the red flags, either. I’m still squarely in the boat that says Little was being overdrafted last year, but you could make a case for their situations being similar in some ways.

Gordon just has a limited body of work and a checkered past. I can’t imagine burning a first rounder on him. A second, perhaps. A first, no way.

He’s got a great chance, but the hype train is going about 100MPH today, too.

sixshooter
Reply to  Ken Kelly
9 years ago

Yeah, third round is the earliest he would go in our league I am sure. I still like Little better than this guy right now. At least Little was included in the preseason magazines, etc. I actually think this is a great thing for Little owners as he is now forced even more to push himself to improve on dropped balls.

Ken Dogson
9 years ago

On Gordon’s 4.53 40…

Pro Days are often .1 to .15 faster than the Combine.

Example: Sanu ran a 4.67 at the Combine and then 4.54 at his Pro Day. That’s just one example of literally thousands.

So Gordon would likely have been in the 4.6 to 4.67 range at the Combine.

Let’s continue with the Sanu comparison.

No 3 Cone for Gordon. Sanu’s was 6.88, with a good shuttle (4.22) relative to his 40 and very good explosion in his lower body reference the broad and vertical. Sanu was selected at number 83, after starting for three years and grabbing 100+ catches and 7 TDs his final year of college. Gordon hasn’t played for a year after character problems surfaced. Gordon is just a little taller and heavier, though his 13 reps at 225 beg the question of what kind of weight he is carrying (and also his work ethic given that he knew he’d be tested).

The Browns likely gave up a top 45 pick for Gordon.

Now add in that against NFL draftable CBs Gordon showed very little while at Baylor.

How can this not be considered a reach?

SJ
Reply to  Ken Dogson
9 years ago

It is absolutely a reach. its only because its this time of year, this point in the offseason that he’s been sought after. Many dynasty leaguers are taking the same approach. With little left on the WW/draft board at this point, why not take a leap of faith on a “talented” guy. Since a lot of the unnamed NFL executives/scouts are saying how talented this guy is, at this point in the offseason, in anyones getting that sort of buzz, he’s gonna be sought after highly in dynasty leagues

DoubleDaggers
9 years ago

hype and potential are hype and potential. Added to the watch list because he was worthy of DLF boards.

9 years ago

Just got him in the beginning of the 3rd round and couldn’t be happier. I have enough veteran WR’s that I can wait for him to develop, and hopefully start for me one day. However, I think some are jumping the gun assuming he’ll wind up being Cleveland’s WR1. Greg Little had a pretty good rookie season, despite not playing his senior year, not having an offseason, and having terrible QB play.

On a higher level, I think this is good news for every Browns skill position player. Weeden has another target, Little should hopefully see less rolled coverage, and T-Rich should see fewer 8-man fronts. Win-win-win-win.

9 years ago

Off topic looking to deal britt or maclin for Marshall plus a pick or devier posey any thoughts on the value of posey? If you traded one would It be britt or maclin or should I sit tight on my young guns ? 16 team idp dynasty league

Ken Dogson
Reply to  Champ1101
9 years ago

I don’t think Posey sees the field this year, and I don’t see him as a guy that ever becomes a #2 or #3 worth owning, unless you are real thin at WR.

Dave
9 years ago

FYI, Gordon failed 3 drug tests in college. One after he fell asleep in a taco bell drive thru line. Good luck with that.

sixshooter
Reply to  Dave
9 years ago

Yep, he failed two while at Baylor and another after transferring to Utah. And…..he is still young! This kid is going to need some serious mentoring or the NFL glamour will lead him down that same path! He thinks he can be a starter this year and will likely be let down. How he handles situations like that will determine how successful he is in the NFL and odds are not exactly on his side just yet!

Cannoncruz
9 years ago

What is the highest blind bid anyone has seen put in on him?

Lando
Reply to  Cannoncruz
9 years ago

I saw $175 (of $200) on him. Other than cheap bye-week fills, they’re esentially done with free agency for the season. Significantly more than the $20 I bid.

Rangerdave
Reply to  Cannoncruz
9 years ago

In a 32-team league, one owner spent $901 of the $1000 he had available.

xchrisntiffx
9 years ago

What makes me feel better about owning him is what he went through after the drug issues. He did counceling like 3 days a week and ramdoms for drugs. He was applying to transfer schools with scholarships in 2013 but saw that wouldn’t happen. I’m betting he realizes how lucky he is right now and has the opportunity to start week 1. I got him before the browns drafted and feel very lucky and excited for his outlook.

Jeff Haverlack
Reply to  xchrisntiffx
9 years ago

Yes, he’s still very young and I think that helps his draft stock in a big way. I don’t really start worrying about maturity issues greatly until a receiver is beyond 25 years old. It’s always nice when they get into the league at a young age. I like how he has responded to his recent past and his dedication to leaving it there. I’d much rather see marijuana issues than assaults or violence arrests.

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