If you missed the news yesterday, the National Football League has conditionally reinstated Cleveland Browns’ wide receiver Josh Gordon. Gordon, who has not caught a pass in the NFL since 2014, has dealt with a myriad of addiction problems throughout his career, and has convinced Roger Goodell and company to give him another opportunity to play in the NFL.
In light of this, former Minnesota Vikings’ wide receiver Cris Carter related what Gordon is going through to his own situation on the Fox Sports One program First Things First.
"The Vikings saved my life...So I'm cheering for Josh & I hope the Browns are able to help him"—@criscarter80 reacts to Josh Gordon's return pic.twitter.com/sLNtMpcSqu— First Things First (@FTFonFS1) November 2, 2017
We all know Carter’s story, having heard it many times over the years. Originally drafted by the Philadelphia Eagles, he had substance abuse problems of his own and was let go by the team. The Vikings put in a $100 waiver claim on him and the rest, as they say, is history. But Carter goes into some pretty significant detail about exactly what the Vikings did for him upon his arrival.
According to Carter. . .and I believe he made mention of this in his Hall of Fame speech as well. . .the Vikings hired a woman named Betty Triliegi, a certified drug and alcohol counselor, when they brought him in. Her entire job with the Minnesota Vikings was Cris Carter. They met several times a week, and she helped to keep Carter on the straight and narrow. He wonders if the Browns. . .who have gotten a reputation of being a bit dysfunctional. . .are equipped to do the same thing for Gordon.
Carter also talked about how the change of scenery helped him. He talks about how he went from Philadelphia, where he had a bunch of friends and people he knew, to Minnesota where he knew basically nobody. Given the way that Carter puts it, it is fair to wonder whether or not going back to Cleveland. . .again. . .is the best thing for him, or if Gordon needs a change of scenery in order to help him break whatever cycle he’s in.
I honestly hope that Cris Carter has, himself, reached out to Josh Gordon in this situation. He’s obviously been in the same place in life that Gordon currently finds himself, and whether Gordon gets his change of scenery from Cleveland or not, there’s a very good chance that this is his last chance to make it in the National Football League. He’s a heck of a football player when he’s focused on the game itself, and hopefully there won’t be another story about another suspension for him after this.
But, if anyone could help him and give him great advice on how to get from the bottom to the top while dealing with these sorts of issues, it’s Cris Carter.