Browns wide receiver Josh Gordon is set to be activated and will likely play in his first NFL game in nearly three years on Sunday, but he’ll have to earn the right to play, even with the success he was able to achieve in years past.
Gordon will be looking to get back to his 2013 form, as he hauled in 87 catches for 1,646 yards that season, and was a dominant force to be reckoned with — despite playing with a few mediocre-at-best quarterbacks.
The Browns coaching staff knows what Gordon is capable of, but it will determine how much he plays depending on his production, not his numbers in the past. Head coach Hue Jackson spoke to reporters on Wednesday in his weekly press conference, and elaborated on what Gordon must do going forward.
“He’s still got to earn the right to be here,” Jackson said, via Pat McManamon of ESPN.com. “He’s earned the right to get back here. He’s got to earn the right to be here each and every day, and he’s been outstanding thus far here. And again, all the things I think were talked about were past behavior.
“Obviously I think he understands that the antennas are up everywhere, and they should be.”
Gordon appears to be motivated to get back on the field, and we’re willing to bet that he’ll return with a good attitude and will be focused on producing — which should provide a lift for the Browns’ offense. It may take a few weeks to shake off the rust, but if Gordon’s head is in the right place, he can likely expect to be fairly involved in the offense, as the team looks to garner its first win of the season.