Every week, it seems like there’s a question about whether Josh Gordon is going to be active. When he was with the Browns, he was away from the team, and upon returning, he dealt with a hamstring injury. After that, he was traded to the Patriots, and there were questions about whether he’d suit up in his first game there. On top of all that, he has appeared on the injury report consistently because of his balky hamstring, though he has played during that time. For this week’s edition on Monday Night Football, Gordon was always thought to be playing despite being “questionable”, but it turns out that he could be missing time after all. And no, it’s not related to injury.
For Monday night injury updates on Rob Gronkowski, click here. For more on LeSean McCoy, go here.
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Is Josh Gordon playing Monday night? Why is he going to miss a quarter?
According to NFL Network’s Ian Rapoport, Gordon is being disciplined for tonight’s Patriots-Bills game. The Patriots are reportedly going to be sitting him out for a quarter because of “tardiness,” so Gordon may not be on the field to start the game.
It’s worth noting that the timeline on the potential benching isn’t exactly clear. Rapoport said it could be a few series or it could be a quarter. Take that with a grain of salt, as it’s possible that this could be an empty threat or Gordon could only miss the first series and come back onto the field. With the Patriots, there’s just no way of knowing their plans — especially given the erratic game flow that occurs in the NFL.
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While Gordon is off the field, Julian Edelman, Rob Gronkowski, and James White figure to benefit the most. They have established themselves as Brady’s top weapons and will be safe options for him to throw to while Gordon is out of the game. Once Gordon comes back in, though, the ball will be spread around more evenly to all four of the top pass-catching weapons.
In terms of fantasy, this mostly impacts Gordon’s owners, as his potential quarter-long absence could limit his stat line, especially if the Pats jump out to a big lead as expected and limit their pass attempts in the second half. Sure, Gordon can always put up a big play on a deep TD, but with limited opportunities to do that, it will cap his overall upside. At this point, though, it seems unlikely that Gordon’s owners would have a superior option, unless Edelman is somehow on your bench behind Gordon.
This is certainly a frustrating development in what has been an annoying year for Gordon’s fantasy owners. It will be interesting to see how long Gordon is held out and if this type of discipline will help to get him back on track and further engrained into “the Patriot Way.”
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