Despite a 4-11 record and six-game losing streak, Cleveland Browns
“It’s definitely a long season,” Gordon said. “It’s a lot of wear and tear. Guys are banged up, hurt, feeling real sore, but it’s the last week, so guys are going to give their last little ounce of energy they’ve got into these last two days of practice and into this game.”
And Gordon would know a little bit about fighting through adversity.
Gordon returned to the field prior to the third week of the regular season with a point to prove after serving a league-mandated two-game suspension because of a failed drug test in the offseason.
In his first 11 games back from the suspension, Gordon broke the franchise record for receiving yards in a single season, and has gained 1,564 yards with nine touchdowns on 80 receptions.
“From what I wanted to get done, I think I met every expectation,” Gordon said. “I could’ve had maybe a few more plays here and there, little things, but I think I did alright.
“I was shooting for 1,000, 1,000-plus yards coming into it, and having gotten over that hill, it’s definitely settled in as a more realistic goal for the future, to keep on doing it consistently.”
In addition to the most prolific single season in Browns history, Gordon has set team records for yards in a game (twice), tied the record for receptions in a game, became the first player in NFL history with back-to-back 200-yard receiving games, and set the league marks for the most receiving yards in two-, three-and four-game stretches.
Gordon ranks first in the NFL in receiving yards, receiving yards-per-game average (120.3), longest catch (95 yards against Jacksonville), longest touchdown, receptions of at least 20 (28) and 40 or more yards (nine).
For his efforts, Gordon was honored, Thursday, with the Cleveland chapter of the Pro Football Writers of America’s Player of the Year Award.
“I was definitely honored to have a group of individuals decide that,” Gordon said. ‘I’m definitely grateful to have that.
“I definitely want to (lead the league). I definitely want to make the goal of finishing out on top, if I can.”
And it is because of his success this year that Gordon said he wants to return to work as soon as possible and help the Browns continue building upon the foundation they laid this season.
“You always want to get ready for the future,” Gordon said. “That’s what we’re really doing. We’re not ready for this to be over because it’s hard to miss it. When it’s the offseason, you’re bored. You have nothing to do. You need this structure in your life. For me, I can’t wait to get it going again.
“You can never have too much consistency, and I don’t think I have enough of it. I’m glad where I’m at right now, but I always think I can do a lot better. Coming into next season, (I want to) hands down, be the best wide receiver in the NFL.”