Browns executive Sashi Brown has been in touch with suspended wide receiver Josh Gordon since he entered rehab, but said he does not know if the troubled former Pro Bowler will apply to the NFL for reinstatement.
Gordon’s business manager, Michael Johnson, told ESPN that the 25-year-old will appeal to Commissioner Roger Goodell to allow him back in the league.
League spokesman Brian McCarthy declined comment on Gordon’s situation.
Gordon hasn’t appeared in a regular-season game since 2014. The 25-year-old was days away from returning to Cleveland’s roster last season but voluntarily entered a rehabilitation facility in September, saying he wanted to “gain full control of my life and continue on a path to reach my full potential as a person.
He completed a 30-day stay at a facility for an unspecified condition.
Speaking at the NFL combine in Indianapolis, Brown, the team’s vice president of football operations, said it’s his understanding that Gordon can reapply in March. Brown said the team checked in on occasion with Josh, “just personally because we care for the young man.”
Brown said it’s too early to speculate on Gordon’s future with the Browns or any other team.
With a history of substance abuse problems, Gordon has been suspended for 43 of his last 48 games. Gordon displayed potential during his time with Cleveland, leading the league with 1,646 yards receiving and nine touchdowns in 2013.
The Browns will reportedly talk to wide receiver Tyrelle Pryor’s agent during the NFL combine in an effort to work out a new contract.
Brown said Wednesday that signing Pryor was a “priority” and the team didn’t use the franchise tag because “we want to have him here long term.”
James Harrison, a five-time Pro Bowl linebacker who led the Steelers with five sacks last season, signed a two-year contract with Pittsburgh that will keep Harrison in black and gold past his 40th birthday. He became the franchise’s all-time sack leader last season when he broke Jason Gildon’s club record. Harrison now has 79 1/2 sacks in 13 years with the team. …
The NFL salary cap for the upcoming season will be $167 million per team, up more than $12 million over last year. The league and the NFL Players Association compile the cap from specific revenues, and it has risen annually. Two years ago it was $143.28 million. This is the fourth consecutive year the cap has risen at least $10 million.