Browns All-Pro wide receiver Josh Gordon has established himself as one of the best players in the NFL when he’s on the field. Unfortunately, he cannot stay out of trouble off it.
Whether those off-field issues persist and cost him his career remains to be seen.
Gordon had another setback when he was arrested shortly before 3 a.m. today in Raleigh, N.C., charged with driving while impaired and cited for traveling 50 mph in a 35 mph zone, Raleigh Police Department director of public affairs Jim Sughrue said this afternoon.
A person charged with DWI in North Carolina is deemed “under the influence of an impairing substance” such as alcohol or a drug. Chemical analysis is used.
WNCN, an NBC affiliate in Raleigh, reported that Gordon's blood-alcohol level was .09 and he admitted to having three drinks with vodka. The legal limit in North Carolina is .08.
After the arrest, Gordon was transported to the Wake County Detention Center, where he was later released on $500 bond. WKYC (Channel 3) first reported that Gordon had been arrested.
"We are aware of the matter and are disappointed to learn of this situation," Browns General Manager Ray Farmer said in a statement. "We will comment further at the appropriate time."
Gordon, 23, was already in hot water with the NFL before the arrest.
On May 9, ESPN's Outside the Lines reported that Gordon tested positive for marijuana and faces a potential ban from the NFL of at least one year. A repeat offender of the league’s substance-abuse policy, Gordon’s appeal hearing is scheduled for sometime in late July, ProFootballTalk.com reported Thursday. Last season, he was suspended for the first two games and docked four game checks for violating the same policy.
The DWI arrest certainly won’t help Gordon in the appeal process, and it’s his second run-in with the law in the past six weeks. A Cuyahoga County Sheriff’s deputy issued him a speeding ticket May 25 for traveling northbound on Interstate 71 in Strongsville at 74 mph in a 60 mph zone. The incident raised more questions about Gordon’s priorities and judgment because a passenger in his vehicle received a citation for possession of marijuana in an amount less than 200 grams during the traffic stop.
"If you're close to Josh Gordon, please help this kid," former Browns defensive captain and Indianapolis Colts linebacker D'Qwell Jackson wrote on Twitter this afternoon. "It's not about football anymore. It's about picking up the pieces of his life."
Gordon entered the NFL in 2012 with a checkered past after failing three marijuana tests in college -- two at Baylor University and one at the University of Utah. Still, he has been dominant on the field, including when he returned from his two-game suspension last September.
The 6-foot-3, 225-pound Gordon finished the 2013 season as the NFL’s leader in receiving yards (1,646, which ranks 10th all time) and receiving yards per game (117.6, which ranks sixth all time). He also had 87 catches and nine touchdowns, earning Associated Press first-team All-Pro honors and his first Pro Bowl selection. He is ranked 16th on the NFL Network’s The Top 100 Players of 2014.