It was made official Friday afternoon that Cleveland Browns wide receiver Josh Gordon was suspended by the NFL for the first two games of the season for violating the league’s substance-abuse policy. He was also fined four game checks. Now, we know the reason for the positive test — at least Brown’s version of the truth. According to Brown, it was a prescribed medicine for strep throat that contained codeine that triggered the positive test.
If Gordon’s side of the story is true, he was unaware that the medication contained codeine.
To be fair to Gordon, he accepted all responsibility from Day 1 and released a statement to apologize for his actions which could stunt the growth of the Cleveland Browns offense.
“In February, I was diagnosed with strep throat for which a doctor prescribed antibiotics and cough medicine. Apparently, the medicine I took contained codeine, which is prohibited by the NFL policy,” Gordon’s statement read. “The policy terms are strict about unintentional ingestion, but the NFL has not imposed the maximum punishment in light of the facts of my case. Therefore, I have chosen to be immediately accountable for the situation. I sincerely apologize for the impact on my team, coaches, and Browns fans. I look forward to working hard in training camp and pre-season, and contributing immediately when I return in week three.”
Because of his prior failed drug tests in college, it is believed that is what triggered his automatic suspension. In most cases, a first time offender is not suspended.
If Gordon was truly unaware of the codeine in his medicine, then he needs to do a better job of educating himself about what is going in his body moving forward. This is all on him regardless of how it went down.
Let’s just hope the Brown wasn’t sippin’ on the purple drank.