Let’s all pile on Josh Gordon

Josh GordonAn alternative title to this blog might be: Why Sports Ethics?

At the outset, I want to say that I am not about to stand up and play a violin and sing a song about how Josh Gordon is just a poor, misunderstood guy who didn’t do anything wrong. If you know anything about my background and what happened to me, you would know that I don’t believe in “coddling.”

Josh Gordon has just failed another drug test. Great (yes, I am being sarcastic). He is looking at a one-year suspension. After the suspension, he has a better than average shot of being kicked off the team and out of the league.

The Cleveland Browns have issued the usual statements to the media about how disappointed they are, even though they are also saying they have no idea that he failed. Of course they do. If I am the Browns, I am buying a little time to figure out what to do next. I can’t blame them.

After the Johnny Manziel debacle of the past year, the Cleveland Browns aren’t going to waste a lot of time wringing their hands over Gordon. Is Josh Gordon a great wide receiver? You bet he is, but the Browns don’t need another problem and that is what Josh Gordon represents.

One problem after another

Josh Gordon was arrested last July 2014 when he got loaded and decided to speed down a city street. Alcohol will do that. It was not his first DUI; it happened in 2013 and he missed games because of it. He was busted for marijuana use while in college. He was thrown out of school for that and he still hadn’t learned his lessons. There have also been non-drug and alcohol related problems such as missing team meetings as well.

This time around (the 2015 drug test) he had one more shot to get it right. All he had to do was to pass a simple, stupid drug and alcohol test. He failed. I suppose he failed because he just didn’t care. Or maybe he was just trying to see what he could get away with, or maybe he figured someone would bail him out of his problems. It does not look like that is going to happen.

Now Josh Gordon might have a big problem: a suspension. When his rear-end is parked on a bench during football season. He might start to figure it out. Without help, I don’t know if he is going to make it.

It is at times like these, that agents, team executives, and an entire host of hanger’s on, want to parade a stream of sports psychologists, substance abuse counselors, ex-NFL “role models” by him.

Josh Gordon needs someone to teach him about making good choices in his life. It is the domain of Sports Ethics.

Whether I lecture to 100 athletes or counsel one athlete, I don’t read from a thick, boring book or hand out pages from some dumb-ass workbook. I start with my story. A story about someone who made some bad choices and where it led me. I talk about the years it took me to rebuild my life and the whole new direction my life has taken.

Josh Gordon doesn’t have years. Football is the narrowest of opportunities and when it is gone, it is gone. Josh Gordon cannot wait. Yes, I blame him for all he has done to himself, but I also believe in second chances. He is almost near the end of his line, even though he is young but I am willing to bet that Sports Ethics training can help him.

So I won’t “pile on.” He doesn’t need that. He needs better choices and someone to help him make those choices.



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