Gordon’s return to the team and possible return to game action in the coming weeks will have a huge effect on the New England wide receiver depth chart and overall offense.
Though Gordon, 28, played in just 11 games for New England after arriving from Cleveland last fall – catching 40 passes for 720 yards (18.0 avg.) and three touchdowns – he had a pretty big impact. Beyond connecting with Tom Brady on receptions, Gordon also made pretty impactful connections with a number of New England teammates.
When word broke of Gordon’s reinstatement with the Patriots in Tennessee preparing for Saturday night’s second preseason game against the Titans, a couple of Gordon’s teammates reacted on social media.
The wide receiver was initially suspended indefinitely last December when he violated the terms of his previous reinstatement under the league's substance abuse policy.
It also came shortly after Gordon revealed he was temporarily stepping away from the game to focus on his mental health.
Gordon, who was drafted by the Cleveland Browns in the 2012 Supplemental Draft, has had a promising career marred by mental health and substance abuse issues. The wide receiver missed two seasons due to suspension and played in just 11 games with the Browns from 2014 to 2018.
He was reinstated in 2017 and played just five games with the Browns that season. Gordon missed Browns training camp the following year to deal with undisclosed health issues and was soon traded to the Patriots after he sustained a hamstring injury during a photoshoot.
Because of his suspension, Gordon has not been present at Patriots training camp this summer, but the receiver was seen working out with Brady in June.
A healthy Gordon could play a significant factor in the Patriots offense, which lost Rob Gronkowski to retirement in the offseason.