As any sports fan can tell you, talent doesn’t always translate into a successful career. Wide Receiver Josh Gordon has unfortunately proven that to be true. While the former Browns, Patriots, and Seahawks player has skill to burn, he’s been on the receiving end of several suspensions.
Although Gordon is currently serving an indefinite suspension, he’s still managing to bring in some additional money to supplement his lack of game checks. Thanks to an auction, the wide receiver just scored a six-figure payday.
Josh Gordon’s roller coaster of an NFL career
During Josh Gordon’s time on the gridiron, he has shown plenty of talent. Unfortunately for both the receiver and his employers, he hasn’t been able t take the field with any consistency.
Gordon’s issues during his time at Baylor, where, as documented by the Houston Chronicle, he was suspended after failing a drug test. He then transferred to the University of Utah but entered into the 2011 NFL supplemental draft before ever taking the field.
The receiver landed with the Cleveland Browns and looked like a steal; he pulled in 137 catches for more than 2,400 yards and 14 touchdowns during his first two campaigns. Before long, though, he ran afoul with the league. Gordon served a two-game suspension in 2013, only took the field five times in 2014, and missed the entirety of the 2015 and 2016 campaigns.
While Gordon returned to the field in 2017, his issues weren’t over. He joined the New England Patriots in 2018 but found himself facing another ban; when Gordon reinstated in 2019, he suffered a knee injury and lost his job. He then joined the Seattle Seahawks but received another indefinite suspension for violating the league’s performance-enhancing drugs and substance abuse policy.
Losing money due to suspensions
On a human level, Josh Gordon’s career has been pretty painful to watch; the receiver has plenty of talent, but hasn’t been able to overcome his own personal demons. The financial implications of his suspensions, however, add further insult to injury.
According to Spotrac’s contract data, Gordon has only made $5.38 million during his NFL career; he’s only taken home more than $1 million in a single season once to date. His stock wasn’t high, to begin with—no team will break the bank on a supplemental draft pick—and his lack of availability has only decreased his earning power. Even if he’s eligible to play in the future, Gordon won’t have any bargaining power.
Furthermore, each of the wide receiver’s suspensions comes with an accompanying fine. Between those and one lesser offense—a facemask penalty with the Patriots—Gordon has had to cough up roughly $2.3 million in punitive payments during his career.
Josh Gordon’s Super Bowl ring just sold for $138,000
Although he was suspended during the postseason, Josh Gordon still earned a Super Bowl ring as a member of the New England Patriots 2018 squad. The receiver, however, isn’t in possession of that momento anymore.
According to Sport Collectors Daily, Gordon’s Super Bowl ring recently hit the auction block at a “Platinum Night’ sale conducted by Heritage Auctions.” While the event featured some marquee items, like a Mickey Mantle bat, a Lou Gehrig contract, and a pair of Muhammad Ali’s boots, the ring still commanded $138,000.
While it’s not clear how much of that money Gordon will actually see—auction houses take a varying commission on each sale—he still should earn at least $100,000 from the deal; that’s not a bad payday, especially for someone facing another indefinite NFL suspension.
At this point, it’s not clear why Josh Gordon sold his Super Bowl ring. Hopefully, he was simply trying to flip an asset that he had no attachment to and wasn’t desperately hurting for $100,000.
Stats courtesy of Pro-Football-Reference