The NFL is still trying to figure out how long Josh Gordon should be suspended, but if Bill Polian had his way that decision would already be made and the punishment would be harsh.
Polian offered his rather blunt and not-especially-sympathetic take on the Gordon situation Wednesday during an appearance on ESPN’s NFL Insiders:
Bill Polian with strong words regarding Browns WR Josh Gordon on NFL Insiders. pic.twitter.com/tI33f3iobZ
— NFL on ESPN (@ESPNNFL) August 20, 2014
Polian is going with the old “Gordon should be suspended for his own good” position. There are some however who would argue that a long suspension could actually hurt Gordon, who would lose all the structure in his life if forced to be away from the team, a circumstance that would only cause him to spiral downward again.
The issue for the NFL isn’t so much protecting Gordon as it is protecting themselves. The league has been getting hammered lately for its bizarre standards in disciplining players, if you can even refer to them as standards.
How long should Gordon be suspended for drug-related offenses when a man like Ray Rice is getting only two games for domestic assault? The league would no doubt prefer to ban Gordon for the full season to send a strong message about violating their drug policy, but it wouldn’t look good to come down hard on Gordon in light of the relatively wrist-slapping punishment they gave Rice.
At this point I’m sure Gordon would just like the decision to be made and the suspense to be ended. He’s been dangling for quite awhile while Roger Goodell and his spin doctors work out the best outcome for themselves.