By Matt Dolloff, 985TheSportsHub.com
According to ESPN's Field Yates, the Patriots are placing wide receiver Josh Gordon on injured reserve with a knee injury. The move will effectively end his season. (Update: Gordon is expected to be healthy in 1-2 weeks, meaning the Patriots will need to waive him once he is.)
Gordon played in six games prior to leaving a Week 6 win over the Giants with the knee injury, catching 20 passes for 287 yards and a touchdown. The Patriots are likely using their last return designation from IR on left tackle Isaiah Wynn, which means Gordon will have no shot of returning later in the season.
Here's an updated look at the Patriots' wide receiver depth chart after their most recent moves:
In addition, rookie N'Keal Harry returned to practice last week after spending the first seven weeks of the season on IR. He has a good chance to be activated next week to play against the Ravens, which is the first such time he will be eligible to play.
Gordon has now gone two straight years without making it to the end of the regular season. In 2018 he received an indefinite suspension for violating the terms of a prior reinstatement. Gordon has received numerous suspensions over his career for violating the league's policy for substances of abuse.
In 2019 it was more of an on-field issue, as Gordon continually got banged up as the first half of the season went along. He battled through a finger injury in Week 3 against the Jets, but stayed on the active roster until twisting his knee while tackling Giants defensive end Markus Golden on a fumble return.
The Sanu trade proved to be more necessary than originally perceived for Bill Belichick, who now has a bit of an easier decision at receiver. With the five above names plus Harry on the roster, he can choose five to carry into games and leave one on the inactive list, if not carry six, which would be a bit of a surprise.
Tom Brady certainly could have used help with pass-catchers. With Ben Watson returning at tight end and Sanu arriving from the Falcons, the Patriots offense continues to morph.
-- According to Ian Rapoport, Gordon is on IR because of bone bruises that he had been dealing with prior to aggravating his knee against the Giants. The Patriots are likely to waive him off IR once he's ready to play.
-- Per Mike Garafolo of the NFL Network, Gordon believes he's almost ready to play. So there's a chance the Patriots let him go and give him an opportunity to sign with another team.
Matt Dolloff is a digital producer for 985TheSportsHub.com. Any opinions expressed do not necessarily reflect those of 98.5 The Sports Hub, Beasley Media Group, or any subsidiaries. Have a news tip, question, or comment for Matt? Follow him on Twitter @mattdolloff or email him at [email protected].