Patriots’ receiver Josh Gordon was reportedly on the verge of another suspension, when he abruptly announced that he is “stepping away” from the NFL to focus on his mental health.
Gordon was about to be hit with another suspension for violating the league’s substance abuse policies, this time an “indefinite” suspension, WBZ CBS Channel 4 reported.
But the NFL Network’s Tom Pelissero hinted that maybe his decision to take a break from the NFL is not exactly voluntary.
“Josh Gordon is facing another indefinite suspension for violating terms of his reinstatement under the substance abuse policy, per source,” Pelissero wrote on Thursday. “He announced today he’s stepping away to address his mental health.”
#Patriots WR Josh Gordon is facing another indefinite suspension for violating terms of his reinstatement under the substance abuse policy, per source. He announced today he’s stepping away to address his mental health.
— Tom Pelissero (@TomPelissero) December 20, 2018
The player also put out a statement saying he takes his mental health seriously.
I take my mental health very seriously at this point to ensure I remain able to perform at the highest level. I have recently felt like I could have a better grasp on things mentally. With that said, I will be stepping away from the football field for a bit to focus on my mental health. I would like to thank Coach Belichick, Mr. Kraft, as well as countless others within the Patriots organization for their continued support. I want to thank my fans for their support as well as I continue down the path getting back to 100%
The team quickly jumped to support the player’s announcement adding that they hoped the press would treat Gordon’s situation as a “private” matter.
Statement from the New England Patriots on Josh Gordon: pic.twitter.com/tXmXrXVrJL
— New England Patriots (@Patriots) December 20, 2018
After joining the NFL in 2012 with a stint at the Cleveland Browns, Gordon has seemingly been on suspension for violating the league’s drug and alcohol abuse policies as he has been as an active player. He served a two-game suspension in 2013 and was then put on suspension indefinitely in 2014. He remained on the sidelines until last season.
Follow Warner Todd Huston on Twitter @warnerthuston.