Embattled Cleveland Browns wide receiver Josh Gordon is naive or tone deaf to the criticism he’s faced with in light of his latest failed drug test.
After sitting out for most of the 2014 NFL season for tongue kissing Mary Jane, his urine was illuminiated once again with alcohol, leaving his future with the team (and potentially the league) in serious peril.
In a long flowing yet earnest and soul-bearing op-ed on Medium, Gordon admitted that he has been smoking weed since he was a youth and also ripped the likes of Charles Barkley, Steven A. Smith and Cris Carter for their “concern” for his well-being.
Here’s a sample:
Dear Sir Charles, Stephen A., Cris and other interested parties,
Thank you for your recent outpouring of concern about my well being. In what has been a difficult time for my family, friends and fans, you — and those like you — have taken it upon yourselves to express just how much you care about me and my future. For that, I am truly appreciative.
Chuck, you have never so much as shook my hand, let alone exchanged a single word with me. Few of you have, to be honest. Respectfully, your worry over my “problems” with substance abuse and my twisting descent into darkness and, apparently, my impending death, is misplaced — mostly because you have very little idea what you are talking about. None of you do, even those of you who seem curiously obsessed with the goings-on in my life.
First, words cannot express the remorse and regret I feel over this latest incident. I acknowledge that the repeated transgressions that have led up to this point have damaged my credibility, and for that, the only person to blame is me.
I have let down many in Cleveland — my Browns teammates, our hard-working coaching staff, the team’s ownership, and the loyal fan base that wants nothing more than to win. Playing there is different than in many other cities. We feel the fans’ pain. We know how important this is to them.
Most importantly, I have failed myself. Again.
I failed myself when started using marijuana regularly as a young teenager. I failed myself when I ruined a once-in-a-lifetime chance to be Robert Griffin III’s running mate during his Heisman Trophy-winning season at Baylor. I failed myself when I didn’t check with the league office to ensure that my doctor-prescribed, codeine-based medicine was allowed under NFL guidelines. I failed myself when I was arrested for driving a motor vehicle with a blood-alcohol level over the legal limit. I failed myself when I missed a team walkthrough late in the season and was suspended for the final game of the year.
But you know what, Charles, Stephen A., Cris and everyone else? I also have succeeded…
Check out the entire open letter on Medium. Do you feel like Gordon should be forgiven? Let us know your thoughts in the comment section and keep in mind the weakening marijuana laws across the country.