Cleveland Browns planning to release Josh Gordon

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The wide receiver announced Thursday that he was entering rehab in an effort to “gain full control of my life.” Gordon is eligible to play in the Browns’ Week 5 contest against the New England Patriots as part of the terms of his NFL reinstatement for a substance abuse violation. Gordon’s decision to enter rehab, however, puts his comeback on hold indefinitely.

“After careful thought and deep consideration I’ve decided that I need to step away from pursuing my return to the Browns and my football career to enter an in-patient rehabilitation facility,” Gordon wrote. “This is the right decision for me and one that I hope will enable me to gain full control of my life and continue on a path to reach my full potential as a person. I appreciate the support of the NFL, NFLPA, the Browns, my teammates, my agent and the community through this extremely challenging process.”

It’s the decision we expected from Jackson, who anointed Griffin as Cleveland’s starter before the season opener. Recently activated off injured reserve, the veteran quarterback hasn’t appeared in a game since suffering a broken bone in his non-throwing shoulder in that ill-fated Week 1 loss to the Eagles.

Since then, the Browns have turned to a hodgepodge of passers — rookies Cody Kessler jersey and cheap jerseys and Kevin Hogan jersey, old-as-the-trees Josh McCown and even quarterback-turned-wideout Terrelle Pryor — to throw the ball for a club still searching for its first win.jersey

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While we know with relative certainty that the Browns will not win the remainder of their games this season — I think Pryor knows that, too — it’s important to focus on his attitude. As fans, and sometimes players, become wiser to the process-driven rebuilding projects around the league, there seems to be less of a moribund attitude surrounding 0-3 teams. On Tuesday, the Around The NFL crew debated which 0-3 team they’d rather be a fan of at this point in the season — and it was sometimes easier to find reasons to get on board with the Browns jersey or Jaguars than the more established Saints or Bears.

The weight of a long losing season could eventually take its toll on the Browns, though this team has already seen two years’ worth of bad news crash into the facility in a matter of weeks. Their starting and backup quarterbacks are gone. The quarterback they passed on at No. 2 is apparently Peyton Manning pre-snap and Aaron Rodgers post-snap. The player they drafted instead, wide receiver Corey Coleman, broke his hand after a breakout week.

On Monday, Cleveland weatherman Scott Sabol shaved his beard. It ended a 108-day odyssey that began when Sabol decided he wouldn’t pick up his razor until the hometown Browns won a game.

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This could have turned real ugly if Josh Lambo’s field goal went straight. But it did not … and Sabol’s face was freed from the tyranny of overgrowth.

The Browns learned this lesson back in 2004, when they felt comfortable enough with the combination of Tim Couch and a 34-year-old Jeff Garcia to pass on Ben Roethlisberger in the draft.

Picking sixth, Cleveland coach Butch Davis oversaw a war room that opted instead for tight end Kellen Winslow II, sending Big Ben on a slide down the board until the Steelers drafted him with the eleventh overall pick.

A trade became increasingly likely after the Browns declined to pick up Mingo’s fifth-year option back in April. It became even more likely after the Browns reunited Mingo with his first NFL defensive coordinator, Ray Horton, in 2016. Horton likely knew Mingo’s limitations in the scheme and preferred to pivot in another direction with a platoon of young pass rushers coming in via the draft.

It will be interesting to see what, exactly, New England’s plans are for Mingo, who has been reluctant to discuss his weight ever since he was drafted. The buzz on him this offseason was that he packed on more muscle than ever, though that didn’t seem to clear the way for a starting role in Cleveland’s new-look defense. Mingo seems personally invested in salvaging his NFL career and he might have found the perfect place to do it.