After his one-year suspension was upheld last week, Browns receiver Josh Gordon was reportedly exploring his legal options, with a lawsuit against the NFL perhaps his best recourse. According to Mike Florio of Pro Football Talk, Gordon and his legal team will decide “in the next day or two” whether to press ahead with courtroom action.
As Rand Getlin of Yahoo! Sports detailed last week, Gordon would likely seek an injuction, similar to the one that stymied drug-related suspensions for Kevin Williams and Pat Williams in 2008, that would allow him to return to the field immediately, and continue playing until the case is resolved. Per Florio, this will be a difficult task, as a court would need proof that Gordon was likely to eventually win the case.
It’s doubtful such a lawsuit would be successful, writes Florio, unless a court finds an obscure Ohio law that contradicts the NFL’s drug program. While noting that Gordon doesn’t have much to lose by at least attempting to sue, Florio writes that Gordon should be wary of upsetting the league, as the NFL and commissioner Roger Goodell have the discretion to allow the receiver to return from his ban before one calendar year expires. Making headlines by facing the league in court might not be the optimal manner by which to endear oneself to NFL management.