Source – Bill Belichick finally confirmed what was widely known. Wide receiver Josh Gordon is a member of the New England Patriots. …
During his Friday press conference Belichick said Gordon and cornerback Cyrus Jones, who was signed back to the team after being released in training camp, have “done about as much as they can do” since taking the field this week.
When asked about Gordon’s past substance abuse issues, Belichick said he would not talk about a player’s injury or personal issues.
“Josh is a smart kid. He’s worked hard. He’s picked up a lot,” Belichick said, adding “we’ll see how it goes.”
It took the better part of 96 hours, at least one contractually obligated radio interview, a series of Tweets from official team and league blue-check accounts, official roster moves, locker next to Tom Brady’s, a couple of practices and several press conferences, but finally Josh Gordon is a member of the Patriots. Why? Because nothing is real until Bill Belichick says it’s real.
That’s not just power. That is omnipotence. The absolute ability to manipulate existence to suit your purposes. He’s like Jesse Plemons in the USS Callister episode of Black Mirror, where he creates an alternate cyber-reality that he puts his coworkers into and he alone can control.
You can make the case that Belichick avoided all mentions of Flash Gordon because the Pats and Browns were working out the details of the compensation. And finally settled on an unconditional 7th round pick coming back to the Patriots. (Meaning that regardless of whether Gordon plays 10 games, every game or gets released tomorrow, the difference between the pick they gave up and the one they get back will be somewhere between 32 and 40 slots. Depending on how many times the Browns face opponents as bad as the Jets.) But don’t buy into that. This was all about waiting until The Sith Lord had a plan in place to avoid having to get into the details of Gordon’s past Reefer Madness-like lifestyle.
So how did The Great Communicator handle it? He buried the Gordon transaction in with an update about Cyrus Jones clearing waivers and being added back onto the 53-man. How did he handle the inevitable million follow up questions about Flash’s affection for ripping hits of Facewrecker Kush? By equating it to an injury he won’t discuss. Like the 50-plus games the guy missed in Cleveland could’ve been listed as “OUT: Bad edibles” Boom. End of discussion.
I’ve said before and I’ll say now, for all the geniuses the man possesses, none is more impressive than his skill at taking all the energy out of a potentially distracting media circus. From “We’re onto Cincinnati” to Mona Lisa Vito to telling all the REAL NEWS guys who showed up to Tim Tebow’s first practice “He’s here to help the team,” to the tour de force way he actually spoke from the heart about Aaron Hernandez for like 10 minutes and never addressed it again, nobody does it like he does. Nobody ever has. Now from here on out, he can say what he’s said about Malcolm Butler when he semi-answered one question about him last February, “I’ve already addressed that” and refer to today’s remarks.
It’s brilliant. Frustrating, because I could hear him talk for days about Gordon’s history and how he plans to keep him off the Demon Weed and get his mind on football. But if the goal is to assimilate this guy and eliminate all distractions that would take away from him being serious about football for the first time since 2013 (spoiler: it is) then there’s literally no better way to handle it. And as long as it works, the only thing we’ll hear about Gordon is how many catches he has. And maybe this little bit of bad decision-making:
The Great Incommunicator does it again.