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Suspended Patriots wide receiver Josh Gordon could reportedly start reinstatement process as early as May

If his treatment goes well, the NFLPA might help him return as early as May

NFL: New England Patriots at Pittsburgh Steelers Charles LeClaire-USA TODAY Sports

The New England Patriots were able to win Super Bowl 53 despite missing one of their most talented players: wide receiver Josh Gordon, one of the team’s top-two at the position alongside MVP Julian Edelman, left the team on December 20 to focus on his mental health and substance abuse problems — all while the NFL was suspending him indefinitely for an infraction that took place earlier during the regular season.

When or if Gordon will be back with the team is uncertain at this point, but according to a report from late January it looks as if a return to New England still appears to be on the table — even though it was publicly refuted by Gordon’s social media team at the time. One thing that is certain is that the team still holds the rights for the 27-year old moving forward, and might be able to get him back as early as training camp if everything works out well.

Per NFL Network’s Tom Pelissero, there is no date set on which Gordon would be able to apply for reinstatement into the league. If the wideout follows his treatment plans, however, the NFLPA is reportedly expected to lay the groundwork for the process as early as May. That being said, everything depends on Gordon and his personal situation — which of course is the primary concern at this point in time.

If he is able to get the help needed and stay on top of his treatment schedule, a reunion with the Patriots could therefore happen over the next few months. This would obviously be great news from a football perspective but much more importantly from Gordon’s personal point of view: him getting reinstated would mean that he has taken important steps in his recovery.