Editor's note: Tony Grossi covers the Cleveland Browns for ESPN 850 WKNR.
TAMPA, Fla. – Word of Josh Gordon’s re-emergence from a one-year NFL suspension may be drawing trade interest from other teams, but Gordon and the Browns aren’t interested in a parting at this time.
ESPN’s Adam Schefter reported the Browns “have gotten inquiries about his availability.”
Gordon was confronted with the rumors after about a two-hour practice session against the Tampa Bay Buccaneers under an oppressive sun and 100 degrees heat index.
“I haven’t heard too much about it,” Gordon said. “Cleveland is my team. That’s where I want to be, everything like that. That’s not even in the ballpark for me. I’m not sure how that works.”
A Browns team source told ESPN Cleveland, “We’re not looking to trade Gordon.”
And Gordon doesn’t want to move on, not after returning from his one-year suspension and finding a head coach, an offense, and an infrastructure in place to see through his career comeback.
“I think it works out perfectly then for me,” he said. “Mr. [Jimmy] Haslam, the organization, Coach [Hue] Jackson, I think the world of those guys, this city, this organization. They're family. They’re showing me the love and respect back to me by allowing me to stay here up to this point.
“I expect to move forward with that. I’m excited about it. This is where I want to be and I’m happy to be with Cleveland.”
Former Browns President Joe Banner had a trade worked out in 2013 that would have sent Gordon to San Francisco for a second-round pick and a player. The deal was blocked, per reports, by Haslam after concern expressed by former coach Rob Chudzinski. Gordon completed that season with 87 catches for a league-best 1,646 yards and nine touchdowns – in only 14 games.
Gordon will have to sit out the first four games of the regular season. It will be his fourth NFL suspension in four years. Another violation of the NFL substances of abuse program would result in another indefinite suspension of Gordon. That risk would certainly lower his trade value.
Gordon is able to practice and play in the preseason. He expects to make his preseason debut here Friday night against the Buccaneers.
After his return for Game 5 of the regular season, he sees nothing but good times ahead for him and the Browns’ offense.
“We see a bright future,” Gordon said. “We envision a lot of downfield passing, that’s for sure. We can throw the ball. I’m not so sure how much we want to do it in preseason. But I know that’s what we work at in practice. I know we have the ability and the talent to stretch the field in every direction.”