The Kansas Metropolis Chiefs have by no means been shy about giving gamers with questionable backgrounds a second likelihood.
Or third or fourth or fifth.
Or, within the case of Josh Gordon, a sixth.
The wildly gifted but trouble-prone large receiver was reinstated by the NFL this week following his fifth suspension for violating its substance-abuse coverage and coverage on efficiency enhancers. And with a evident want for a giant, rangy large receiver for Patrick Mahomes, it made sense that Kansas Metropolis was one among a number of groups to inquire about him.
Gordon wound up signing with the Chiefs on Tuesday. At some point later, he was carrying a crimson No. 19 jersey and understanding with the follow squad whereas making an attempt to digest as a lot of coach Andy Reid’s sturdy offensive playbook as doable.
“Josh is an effective participant. I feel everyone knows that,” Reid stated, “and he is labored onerous on his state of affairs and ensuring it was proper. He is been reinstated by the league, which I believed was an essential step, and so we welcome him aboard.”
Reid’s status as a coach prepared to provide gamers the advantage of the doubt dates to his time in Philadelphia, when he most famously gave Michael Vick a possibility to be his quarterback following his jail sentence for his function in a dogfighting ring.
It has continued in Kansas Metropolis with blended outcomes.
Many groups took Tyreek Hill off their draft boards totally following his arrest on costs of home violence throughout his time at Oklahoma State. He had completed his school profession at tiny West Alabama, the place he received rave opinions from coaches, and the Chiefs took a fifth-round flier on him within the 2016 draft.
Not solely has he steered away from hassle, he is been a three-time All-Professional whereas setting a slew of franchise data.
Travis Kelce missed a complete school season at Cincinnati to a suspension, and plenty of imagine that harm his inventory main as much as the 2013 draft. The Chiefs took him within the third spherical and, very like Hill, he has earned three All-Professional nods, set a slew of data and joined up together with his speedy counterpart to assist the Chiefs win a Tremendous Bowl.
On the opposite facet of the coin are gamers corresponding to Marcus Peters, Kareem Hunt and Frank Clark.
Peters was a two-time All-Professional cornerback for the Chiefs, who drafted him regardless of his getting kicked off his school crew. However he had run-ins with coaches and teammates in Kansas Metropolis and finally was traded to the Rams.
Hunt, who additionally had points in school, had a dominant rookie season for Kansas Metropolis earlier than video surfaced of him kicking a girl in a lodge hallway. The Chiefs instantly launched Hunt, who was later signed by the Browns.
Within the case of Clark, who had a home violence arrest in school, the Chiefs traded with the Seahawks for him and signed the move rusher to a long-term deal. However he was arrested once more in March in Los Angeles and is going through a felony gun possession cost; his arraignment and plea listening to is about for subsequent week.
“All people deserves a possibility to not less than attempt to do the precise factor,” Reid stated.
Gordon’s expertise has by no means been disputed. He led the league with 1,646 yards receiving in 2013, when he was an All-Professional with Cleveland, and he is confirmed flashes of that very same means throughout temporary stops in Seattle and New England.
The query is whether or not Gordon can keep away from the drug points which have plagued his profession.
“He’s had an incredible eight months right here of caring for enterprise. The league clearly understands that he’s a superb man,” Reid stated. “We all the time promote Kansas Metropolis normally — it’s an incredible place to stay, an incredible fan base and so forth. So you’ll have help. So long as you’re doing the precise issues, you’re going to have help.”
The Chiefs even have a robust locker room tradition that ought to assist Gordon keep out of hassle.
“We like bringing in good soccer gamers, guys that work onerous and are available right here and wish to win soccer video games,” Mahomes stated, “and so it was a heck of a possibility to deliver him in right here and contain him in that receiver room, and he’ll have his function. He’s an incredible soccer participant, and I feel you recognize on this offense everyone will get an opportunity to make performs.”
The Chiefs had hoped that Mecole Hardman, Demarcus Robinson or Byron Pringle would emerge as their No. 2 large receiver after Sammy Watkins left in free company. However all of them have been inconsistent at finest, and now they flip their hopes to a participant whose measurement and athleticism is in contrast to the rest they’ve on the roster.
“He’s going to be a man that even when he’s coated, he’s not coated. You possibly can form of throw it up there and he could make performs,” Mahomes stated. “I’ve talked to him somewhat bit right here now and he looks like an incredible dude that wishes to come back and work, so we’ll see as he will get out right here on the follow discipline how he can assist us as an offense.”