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Matt Waldman

Josh Gordon Everything Thread

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2 things I want to know (I've accepted the 10 games).

1) Where is this 4th violation coming from? All we've ever heard is 3rd violation, than today 4th comes out? Does it have to do with the DUI? The speeding incident with weed in the car?

2) I don't even know why I'm asking, but is there a released suspension length for a 5th violation?

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I've lost count of the violations, but I doubt there's a secret one. If only three have been publicized, I suspect that whoever's saying four is just mistaken.

I trust that the NFL and the NFLPA have the count right, in any case.

I would not get my hopes up, however, by thinking: "she said he's got four violations, and the punishment for the fourth is ten games; but in fact he's only got three violations, so he should be suspended for fewer than ten games." Anybody who's wrong about how many violations Gordon has had is probably also wrong about how many violations it takes to get a ten-game suspension.

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Ian Rapport just said they are using the old tolerances to charge Gordon but the new drug suspension rules to suspended him. It's his 4th offense, 10 games in this case. Looks like the NFL picks and chooses what they want to follow. BS

The new policy is retroactive back to the beginning of the league year, which is March 11, 2014.

That's not BS. That's perfectly sensible. In fact, it's quite favorable to the players.

Think about how rules are changed in your own fantasy leagues. They're usually not retroactive at all. They usually don't take effect until next year. But when they do take effect during the current year, they'll only be enforced back to the beginning of the year. They're not going to go back and change results from the previous year.

Gordon's positive test occurred during the previous year. His suspension was handed down this year. That's why they're not disturbing the test results, but are adjusting the length of the suspension.

Right but my understanding is that 10 months is for 4 incidents under the new rules, and he only has 3 incidents even if we assume, for now, that the old rules applied to his last positive test.

So why is the penalty for 4 incidents being applied to him?

Edited by mdlane

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There has been no official word on Gordon. Until they say it it could be anything. Yesterday it was 6 then this afternoon its 8 and now its 10. Is it 10, probably but again tomorrow morning it could be 4 or it could be 12. Once its official then its official.

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Right but my understanding is that 10 months is for 4 incidents under the new rules, and he only has 3 incidents even if we assume, for now, that the old rules applied to his last positive test.

Does your understanding that ten games is for four violations come from the same place as your understanding that he's having the four-violation penalty applied to him?

I suspect that if one piece of that puzzle is wrong, they probably both are. If Gordon has only three violations, I think it's likely that he's having the three-game penalty applied to him, and that ten games is for three violations.

I'm just guessing, though. You're right that it's odd that the "four violations" thing is being thrown around without further explanation (or retraction).

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More source news

According to the Cleveland Plain Dealer, Josh Gordon "has been notified" his suspension will be reduced from 16 to 10 games, "pending final approval" of the NFL's new drug policy.

Profootballtalk.com has now joined the Plain Dealer and ESPN's Adam Schefter in reporting Gordon's suspension will indeed be ten games, reduced from 16. The new substance abuse policy reduced the ban. PFT's Mike Florio reports Gordon will be subject to another two-game suspension stemming from his offseason DUI arrest, but Florio considers it "unlikely" that the additional ban will be enforced during the 2014 season. So Gordon's projected return date this year is November 23 against the Falcons. That's Week 12.
Edited by damageinc

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But this is supposed to be Gordon's third violation. As determined by the punishment he was given under the old policy. Third violation = indefinite suspension, possible reinstatement after 1 year.

We apparently don't know about this other secret violation yet. But Mary Cay does.

was she the 4th violation?

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I also am happy to stash Gordon and if I make it to be in contention at week 11 I will be thrilled to have him week 12-13 and maybe the playoffs.

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Right but my understanding is that 10 months is for 4 incidents under the new rules, and he only has 3 incidents even if we assume, for now, that the old rules applied to his last positive test.

Does your understanding that ten games is for four violations come from the same place as your understanding that he's having the four-violation penalty applied to him?

I suspect that if one piece of that puzzle is wrong, they probably both are. If Gordon has only three violations, I think it's likely that he's having the three-game penalty applied to him, and that ten games is for three violations.

I'm just guessing, though. You're right that it's odd that the "four violations" thing is being thrown around without further explanation (or retraction).

Pretty much. The simplest explanation is that "four violations" was a misstatement

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Does anyone else assume the mystery extra violation was that he was tested on memorial day this summer when his vehicle was pulled over and his friend had weed on him and the car smelled. I would be shocked if he wasn't smoking then.

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Does anyone else assume the mystery extra violation was that he was tested on memorial day this summer when his vehicle was pulled over and his friend had weed on him and the car smelled. I would be shocked if he wasn't smoking then.

I've heard that the 4 are this: 1. When he entered the league, already placed in stage 1, 2. The codeine, 3. The marijuana violation, 4. The DUI.

I think it's bs that he was put into stage one when he got into the league.

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Congrats to all of you who rolled the dice on him. You guys got a first round choice for nothing who will be a beast in the playoffs. + last few regular season games.

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Congrats to all of you who rolled the dice on him. You guys got a first round choice for nothing who will be a beast in the playoffs. + last few regular season games.

I don't think six games of Gordon would have been drafted in the 1st round.

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Congrats to all of you who rolled the dice on him. You guys got a first round choice for nothing who will be a beast in the playoffs. + last few regular season games.

I don't think six games of Gordon would have been drafted in the 1st round.

He'll feel like a first rounder when that time come. But I must admit if he doesn't perform, I'll be shattered. The kind of despair like when you carry your newborn son out of the hospital and raised him into a young man with a scholarship to Princeton only for him to be on a high jacked plane texting you a final message "I'm sorry pop, I love you"

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Congrats to all of you who rolled the dice on him. You guys got a first round choice for nothing who will be a beast in the playoffs. + last few regular season games.

I don't think six games of Gordon would have been drafted in the 1st round.

He'll feel like a first rounder when that time come. But I must admit if he doesn't perform, I'll be shattered. The kind of despair like when you carry your newborn son out of the hospital and raised him into a young man with a scholarship to Princeton only for him to be on a high jacked plane texting you a final message "I'm sorry pop, I love you"

Well... you certainly do paint a grim picture.

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Congrats to all of you who rolled the dice on him. You guys got a first round choice for nothing who will be a beast in the playoffs. + last few regular season games.

I don't think six games of Gordon would have been drafted in the 1st round.

He'll feel like a first rounder when that time come. But I must admit if he doesn't perform, I'll be shattered. The kind of despair like when you carry your newborn son out of the hospital and raised him into a young man with a scholarship to Princeton only for him to be on a high jacked plane texting you a final message "I'm sorry pop, I love you"

Well... you certainly do paint a grim picture.

sorry watched a lot of 9/11 stuff

Edited by mrbigg

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Pure speculation.... Another possible explanation for reports of a stage 4 thing is that multiple failed college tests are handled differently in the new policy.

In the old policy, Gordon's 3 failed college tests landed him in Stage 1. The codeine was then Stage 2 and the marijuana Stage 3.

It could be in the new policy that, say, 1 failed college test gets you Stage 1, while 2 or more failed college tests gets you Stage 2. In which case the codeine would be Stage 3 and the marijuana Stage 4.

That would be consistent with the other explanation that they are not changing test results from before the league year, but are just applying whatever tests were failed to the new policy to see what level the person is at now.

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that would make sense. I haven't been following too closely, (this thread moves fast). I still don't get how the latest marijuana test would count against him if technically by the new rules he never failed it? Or are they applying 2 different set of rules for Gordon?

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Congrats to all of you who rolled the dice on him. You guys got a first round choice for nothing who will be a beast in the playoffs. + last few regular season games.

I don't think six games of Gordon would have been drafted in the 1st round.

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I'm not suggesting it would have, but what I am saying is that the people who took a chance on Gordon will have an elite talent who would have been taken in the first round for a throw away choice that would have been used on a marginal player...The owners who drafted Gordon did a great job + will have a huge advantage come playoff time.

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that would make sense. I haven't been following too closely, (this thread moves fast). I still don't get how the latest marijuana test would count against him if technically by the new rules he never failed it? Or are they applying 2 different set of rules for Gordon?

Reporting has been atrocious so it's hard to take anything as gospel.

But from what we've heard, tests done before the start of the new league year in March 2014 would continue to be judged as pass or fail based on the previous policy that was in effect at the time. So Gordon's fail is still a fail. Tests done in the 2014 league year would be judged by the new levels.

Then whatever number of failed tests result after that, are applied to the new policy's stages to see where someone is at. Any unserved suspensions under the old policy that would change get modified.

So Gordon's failed tests were all before March 2014. So none of his tests are going to switch from failed to pass. All that changes is what stage that number of failed tests might land him in, and what the punishment is for that stage now.

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I still don't understand what the basis of suspending him 10 games is. Why ten? What information did they use to get that? Seems like he would pass the test with the new regulations, so either all or none.

Some have speculated that there is a fourth offense out there.

But there is nothing official either.

I feel like so many of these suspensions are just pulled out of a hat. There should be a written instruction for this kind of stuff that is black and white. Gordon and Welker. Suspended and Unsuspended. Oh wait...

Yeah plus Orlando Scandrick...

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If Gordon gets 10 games then Jay Feeley is a liar

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<b>Pure speculation.... Another possible explanation for reports of a stage 4 thing is that multiple failed college tests are handled differently in the new policy.</b>

In the old policy, Gordon's 3 failed college tests landed him in Stage 1. The codeine was then Stage 2 and the marijuana Stage 3.

It could be in the new policy that, say, 1 failed college test gets you Stage 1, while 2 or more failed college tests gets you Stage 2. In which case the codeine would be Stage 3 and the marijuana Stage 4.

That would be consistent with the other explanation that they are not changing test results from before the league year, but are just applying whatever tests were failed to the new policy to see what level the person is at now.

The problem is, his last violation isn't a violation. It is hard to apply new punishment retroactively without consideration of if the new punishment should even be applied because one of the offenses isn't an offense.

Everyone including the reporters are taking their eye off the prize. Once you apply new punishment standards to past crimes you are acting retroactively.

The next step in Gordon's court is to apply the ability to reconsider whether his last offense should be reviewed.

Likely, there will be wording to allow him to appeal his last violation and plead it down.

It is not over. I say he ends up with 6-8 when all is said and done.

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that would make sense. I haven't been following too closely, (this thread moves fast). I still don't get how the latest marijuana test would count against him if technically by the new rules he never failed it? Or are they applying 2 different set of rules for Gordon?

Reporting has been atrocious so we it's hard to take anything as gospel.

But from what we've heard, tests done before the start of the new league year in March 2014 would continue to be judged as pass or fail based on the previous policy that was in effect at the time. So Gordon's fail is still a fail. Tests done in the 2014 league year would be judged by the new levels.

Then whatever number of failed tests result after that, are applied to the new policy's stages to see where someone is at. Any unserved suspensions under the old policy that would change get modified.

So Gordon's failed tests were all before March 2014. So none of his tests are going to switch from failed to pass. All that changes is what stage that number of failed tests might land him in, and what the punishment is for that stage now.

Got it, ok makes more sense. So if he had just waited longer to get that contact high he claims, he'd be off the hook. lol, life is funny sometimes.

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From PFT.

NFL spokesman Greg Aiello tells PFT that the policy is “not done” and that there is “some work to do.” Likewise, the NFLPA has announced that the board of player representatives authorized leadership to finalize an agreement “consistent with detailed term sheets” the players reviewed.

“We hope to have final agreements, including effective date for players with adjusted discipline, very soon,” the union said.

As a practical matter, it means that suspension of players like Broncos receiver Wes Welker won’t be lifted until the agreements are written up and signed.

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I'm not suggesting it would have, but what I am saying is that the people who took a chance on Gordon will have an elite talent who would have been taken in the first round for a throw away choice that would have been used on a marginal player...The owners who drafted Gordon did a great job + will have a huge advantage come playoff time.

Isn't Gordo looking at free agency at the end of the year as well? Would be a perfect time to put on a display.

Edited by SaintsInDome2006

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that would make sense. I haven't been following too closely, (this thread moves fast). I still don't get how the latest marijuana test would count against him if technically by the new rules he never failed it? Or are they applying 2 different set of rules for Gordon?

Reporting has been atrocious so it's hard to take anything as gospel.

But from what we've heard, tests done before the start of the new league year in March 2014 would continue to be judged as pass or fail based on the previous policy that was in effect at the time. So Gordon's fail is still a fail. Tests done in the 2014 league year would be judged by the new levels.

Then whatever number of failed tests result after that, are applied to the new policy's stages to see where someone is at. Any unserved suspensions under the old policy that would change get modified.

So Gordon's failed tests were all before March 2014. So none of his tests are going to switch from failed to pass. All that changes is what stage that number of failed tests might land him in, and what the punishment is for that stage now.

This is from the 7/9/13 RW & CPD:

The Cleveland Plain Dealer reports Josh Gordon is already in Stage 3 of the NFL's drug program and is now one failed drug test away from a one-year suspension.

Gordon's February failed drug test for codeine was his "second strike," suggesting he either failed another drug test before that, or entered the NFL already in the league's drug program. The codeine test vaulted Gordon into Stage 3. As Browns beat reporter Mary Kay Cabot writes, "One more failed test and Gordon's storybook NFL career could be in serious jeopardy." Players suspended for one year under the substance policy can apply for reinstatement after the year is up. For now, Gordon is only suspended for Weeks 1 and 2.
I don't have the knowledge on this stuff that others here have. Does Stage 3 mean there were 3 violations by that point?
Edited by SaintsInDome2006

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I'm not suggesting it would have, but what I am saying is that the people who took a chance on Gordon will have an elite talent who would have been taken in the first round for a throw away choice that would have been used on a marginal player...The owners who drafted Gordon did a great job + will have a huge advantage come playoff time.

I'm not suggesting it would have, but what I am saying is that the people who took a chance on Gordon will have an elite talent who would have been taken in the first round for a throw away choice that would have been used on a marginal player...The owners who drafted Gordon did a great job + will have a huge advantage come playoff time.

Isn't Gordo looking at free agency at the end of the year as well? Would be a perfect time to prove he can stay away from drugs..

Fixed.

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that would make sense. I haven't been following too closely, (this thread moves fast). I still don't get how the latest marijuana test would count against him if technically by the new rules he never failed it? Or are they applying 2 different set of rules for Gordon?

Reporting has been atrocious so it's hard to take anything as gospel.

But from what we've heard, tests done before the start of the new league year in March 2014 would continue to be judged as pass or fail based on the previous policy that was in effect at the time. So Gordon's fail is still a fail. Tests done in the 2014 league year would be judged by the new levels.

Then whatever number of failed tests result after that, are applied to the new policy's stages to see where someone is at. Any unserved suspensions under the old policy that would change get modified.

So Gordon's failed tests were all before March 2014. So none of his tests are going to switch from failed to pass. All that changes is what stage that number of failed tests might land him in, and what the punishment is for that stage now.

This is from the 7/9/13 RW & CPD:

The Cleveland Plain Dealer reports Josh Gordon is already in Stage 3 of the NFL's drug program and is now one failed drug test away from a one-year suspension.

Gordon's February failed drug test for codeine was his "second strike," suggesting he either failed another drug test before that, or entered the NFL already in the league's drug program. The codeine test vaulted Gordon into Stage 3. As Browns beat reporter Mary Kay Cabot writes, "One more failed test and Gordon's storybook NFL career could be in serious jeopardy." Players suspended for one year under the substance policy can apply for reinstatement after the year is up. For now, Gordon is only suspended for Weeks 1 and 2.
I don't have the knowledge on this stuff that others here have. Does Stage 3 mean there were 3 violations by that point?

Gordon had 3 failed tests in college that put him in Stage 1 automatically. If I read the drug policy right, you can actually go from Stage 1 to Stage 2 just based on a doctor's diagnosis, without having an additional failed test. In Gordon's case though he had a failed test while (edit to add: I believe) in Stage 1, that he said was due to codeine in cough syrup, which would have put him in Stage 2. And he got a suspension consistent with being in Stage 2. The current marijuana then would put him in Stage 3 where the penalty is a minimum of a year suspension, consistent with what he got.

You can read the text of the drug policy that is being replaced here if you want. We don't know details of the stages for the new policy they are coming out with.

Edit to add: Apple Jack might be right about him having been in Stage 2 already. I'm not positive, but in any event he's definitely had enough violations to be in Stage 3, and the penalties were consistent along the way with the policy.

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<b>Pure speculation.... Another possible explanation for reports of a stage 4 thing is that multiple failed college tests are handled differently in the new policy.</b>

In the old policy, Gordon's 3 failed college tests landed him in Stage 1. The codeine was then Stage 2 and the marijuana Stage 3.

It could be in the new policy that, say, 1 failed college test gets you Stage 1, while 2 or more failed college tests gets you Stage 2. In which case the codeine would be Stage 3 and the marijuana Stage 4.

That would be consistent with the other explanation that they are not changing test results from before the league year, but are just applying whatever tests were failed to the new policy to see what level the person is at now.

The problem is, his last violation isn't a violation. It is hard to apply new punishment retroactively without consideration of if the new punishment should even be applied because one of the offenses isn't an offense.

Everyone including the reporters are taking their eye off the prize. Once you apply new punishment standards to past crimes you are acting retroactively.

The next step in Gordon's court is to apply the ability to reconsider whether his last offense should be reviewed.

Likely, there will be wording to allow him to appeal his last violation and plead it down.

It is not over. I say he ends up with 6-8 when all is said and done.

Why?

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I'm not suggesting it would have, but what I am saying is that the people who took a chance on Gordon will have an elite talent who would have been taken in the first round for a throw away choice that would have been used on a marginal player...The owners who drafted Gordon did a great job + will have a huge advantage come playoff time.

An owner in my 12 team redraft league who DID draft Gordon at 12.03 actually dropped him last night and paid $50 for Allen Hurns. Our draft was held after the arbitrator ruling upheld the 16 game suspension.

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I'm not suggesting it would have, but what I am saying is that the people who took a chance on Gordon will have an elite talent who would have been taken in the first round for a throw away choice that would have been used on a marginal player...The owners who drafted Gordon did a great job + will have a huge advantage come playoff time.

An owner in my 12 team redraft league who DID draft Gordon at 12.03 actually dropped him last night and paid $50 for Allen Hurns. Our draft was held after the arbitrator ruling upheld the 16 game suspension.

Arguably he's kind of like Harvin last year, maybe with more upside and without the injury risk. And Gordon will have zero competition for targets from any real WR1 on the Browns, except maybe Hawkins who may be a decent WR3 this year. But Gordon does carry the same risk re: rust plus the additional risk re: what he does on his time off. Most likely by Game 11 the Browns won't be as good of an offense as SEA either. Harvin got kicked around a little bit between FF rosters last year. Harvin didn't pan out but that was because of his injury situation.

Edited by SaintsInDome2006

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I'm not suggesting it would have, but what I am saying is that the people who took a chance on Gordon will have an elite talent who would have been taken in the first round for a throw away choice that would have been used on a marginal player...The owners who drafted Gordon did a great job + will have a huge advantage come playoff time.

You really can't be serious if you expect Gordon to be productive in week 11 or 12. He will not hit the ground running and is likely to be borderline starter production for a few weeks. More likely a wasted season with a big play or two, but no monster games

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<b>Pure speculation.... Another possible explanation for reports of a stage 4 thing is that multiple failed college tests are handled differently in the new policy.</b>

In the old policy, Gordon's 3 failed college tests landed him in Stage 1. The codeine was then Stage 2 and the marijuana Stage 3.

It could be in the new policy that, say, 1 failed college test gets you Stage 1, while 2 or more failed college tests gets you Stage 2. In which case the codeine would be Stage 3 and the marijuana Stage 4.

That would be consistent with the other explanation that they are not changing test results from before the league year, but are just applying whatever tests were failed to the new policy to see what level the person is at now.

The problem is, his last violation isn't a violation. It is hard to apply new punishment retroactively without consideration of if the new punishment should even be applied because one of the offenses isn't an offense.

Everyone including the reporters are taking their eye off the prize. Once you apply new punishment standards to past crimes you are acting retroactively.

The next step in Gordon's court is to apply the ability to reconsider whether his last offense should be reviewed.

Likely, there will be wording to allow him to appeal his last violation and plead it down.

It is not over. I say he ends up with 6-8 when all is said and done.

Why?
Why not? I explained why. Simply snarking "why" makes you as clever as any 5 year old. Edited by I Am the Stig

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Edit to add: Apple Jack might be right about him having been in Stage 2 already. I'm not positive, but in any event he's definitely had enough violations to be in Stage 3, and the penalties were consistent along the way with the policy.

I meant stage one.

Edited by Apple Jack

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USA Today got their hands on the terms sheet the players voted on. So this isn't an actual agreement between the players and league... this is what the players told their union leadership they had the greenlight to work out final wording for. If the league doesn't agree to something, doesn't mean it'll make it in. http://www.usatoday.com/story/sports/nfl/2014/09/13/nfl-new-drug-policy-three-things/15571205/

1. Marijuana won't be punished like other drugs

All players will be tested at least once per league year during training camp for substances of abuse, including marijuana. However, it'll take more violations to reach the advanced discipline stages for marijuana than for cocaine, amphetamines, opiates, opioids, phencyclidine or MDMA.

A first offense for any of those drugs enters a player into Stage One of the intervention program for up to 90 days. If a player tests positive again while in Stage One, he'll be subject to an immediate three-week fine and advanced to Stage Two.

In Stage Two, players will be subject to unannounced testing up to 10 times a month and marijuana is separated into its own discipline structure. Here's how the term sheet lays it out:

If player is in the program by testing positive for either marijuana (MJ) or other banned substances of abuse (O):

Next violation relating to MJ 2 game fine

Next violation relating to O 4 game fine

Player's last discipline was 2 game fine for MJ:

Next violation relating to MJ 4 game fine

Next violation relating to O 4 game fine

Player's last discipline was 4 game fine for MJ or O:

Next violation relating to MJ 4 game suspension

Next violation relating to O 4 game suspension, entry into Stage 3 for O

Player's last discipline was for 4 game suspension for MJ or O:

Next violation relating to MJ 10 game suspension, entry into Stage 3

Next violation relating to O Banishment, can reinstatement after 1 year

Player's last discipline was for 10 game suspension for MJ:

Next violation relating to MJ Banishment, can reinstatement after 1 year

The threshold for a positive marijuana test will now be 35 nanograms per milliliter – up from 15 ng/ml under the 2006 drug policy, but still lower than the standards used by Major League Baseball (50 ng/ml) and WADA (150 ng/ml).

Discipline for marijuana violations after the last game of the 2013 season will be adjusted under the new marijuana discipline schedule, except that suspensions will not convert to fines.

Players remain in Stage Two for a minimum of one year and in Stage Three for a minimum of two years. Under the old policy, a player in Stage Three remained there for the rest of his career.

2. Commissioner has discretion over enhanced DUI bans

Though a two-game suspension without pay is the new standard for a first offense related to alcohol and operating a vehicle, the commissioner can impose increased discipline under "aggravating circumstances." Per the term sheet:

If the Commissioner finds that there were aggravating circumstances, including but not limited to felonious conduct, extreme intoxication (BAC of .015% or more), property damage or serious injury or death to the Player or a third party, and/or if the Player has had prior drug or alcohol-related misconduct, increased discipline may be imposed.

Discipline for a second or subsequent offense, absent aggravating circumstances, will be a suspension without pay for eight regular and/or postseason games as determined by the Commissioner.

If players are convicted or admit to any violation of law relating to any substance of abuse other than alcohol:

Absent aggravating circumstances, discipline for a first offense will be a suspension without pay for up to four regular and/or post-season games. If the Commissioner finds that there were aggravating circumstances, including but not limited to felonious conduct or serious injury or death of third parties, and/or if the Player has had prior drug or alcohol-related misconduct, increased discipline may be imposed.

Discipline for a second or subsequent offense, absent aggravating circumstances, will be a suspension without pay for a minimum of six up to ten regular and/or post-season games. A Player's treatment history may be considered by the Commissioner in determining the appropriate level of discipline.

3. HGH testing will begin soon

Lost amidst all the talk about changes to the substance abuse policy – and the suspensions they could retroactively impact – is the fact the new PED policy finally will include blood testing for human growth hormone.

The term sheet says the league and union "aim to commence hGH testing within 14 days of the date of agreement on this Policy," which could be by the end of the month, depending how quickly things get finalized.

There will be no population study to determine the appropriate "decision limit" for NFL players, as the union had pushed for and the league at one point agreed. (Instead, players have the right to challenge the science of the isoforms test.) So, the league can go straight into full-blown testing – and discipline.

Five players from eight randomly selected teams will be selected by a computer program for blood testing in the preseason and the regular season. Five players on each club during the postseason also will be tested, and 10% of each team's players will be randomly selected for offseason testing. There is pre-employment and reasonable cause testing, too.

Discipline will be structured the same way it is for other PEDs. Per the term sheet:

Step One/First Violation: The first time a Player violates this Policy by testing positive for a Prohibited Substance; attempting to substitute, dilute or adulterate a specimen; manipulating a test result; or by violation of Section 5 (violations of law & other sufficient credible evidence based violations), he will be suspended without pay pursuant to the following schedule:

- Positive Test Result for Diuretic or Masking Agent but No Banned Substance:

Two (2) regular and/or postseason games.

- Positive Test Result for Stimulant or Anabolic Agent

Four (4) regular and/or postseason games.

If a Player tests positive for a banned stimulant outside of the Playing Season (first preseason game through player's teams last game), the Player will not be subject to discipline under this Policy, but will instead be treated as a behavioral referral to the Policy and Program on Substances of Abuse.

- Positive Test Result Plus a Diuretic or Masking Agent/Attempt to Substitute, Dilute or Adulterate a Specimen/Attempt to Manipulate a Test Result/Violation of Section 5:

Six (6) regular and/or postseason games.

Step Two/Second Violation: The second time a Player violates this Policy by testing positive for a Prohibited Substance; attempting to substitute, dilute or adulterate a specimen; manipulating a test result; or by violation of Section 5, he will be suspended without pay for:

Ten (10) regular and/or postseason games

Step Three: The third time a Player violates the Policy by testing positive for a Prohibited Substance; attempting to substitute, dilute or adulterate a specimen; manipulating a test result; or by violation of Section 5:

Banishment from the NFL for a period of at least two (2) seasons

One note on retroactive discipline here: Players who had a violation after the last game of the 2013 season arising from a first stimulant positive test will have suspensions immediately lifted and will enter into the substance abuse program.

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USA Today got their hands on the terms sheet the players voted on. So this isn't an actual agreement between the players and league... this is what the players told their union leadership they had the greenlight to work out final wording for. If the league doesn't agree to something, doesn't mean it'll make it in. http://www.usatoday.com/story/sports/nfl/2014/09/13/nfl-new-drug-policy-three-things/15571205/

1. Marijuana won't be punished like other drugs

...

If player is in the program by testing positive for either marijuana (MJ) or other banned substances of abuse (O):

Next violation relating to MJ 2 game fine...

Next violation relating to MJ 4 game fine...

Next violation relating to MJ 4 game suspension...

Next violation relating to MJ 10 game suspension, entry into Stage 3...

Player's last discipline was for 10 game suspension for MJ:

Next violation relating to MJ Banishment, can reinstatement after 1 year

The threshold for a positive marijuana test will now be 35 nanograms per milliliter – up from 15 ng/ml under the 2006 drug policy, but still lower than the standards used by Major League Baseball (50 ng/ml) and WADA (150 ng/ml).

Discipline for marijuana violations after the last game of the 2013 season will be adjusted under the new marijuana discipline schedule, except that suspensions will not convert to fines.

Players remain in Stage Two for a minimum of one year and in Stage Three for a minimum of two years. Under the old policy, a player in Stage Three remained there for the rest of his career.

... ...

Just have to love the logical consistency here: 2 games, 4 games - then 10 games, not 8 games - then 16 games. :confused: No wonder people thought it would be 8.

Edited by SaintsInDome2006

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This could end up being important down the road:

There will be no population study to determine the appropriate "decision limit" for NFL players, as the union had pushed for and the league at one point agreed. (Instead, players have the right to challenge the science of the isoforms test.)

As I understand it from past articles, basically the NFLPA was arguing that NFL players may have more natural HGH in their bodies than other humans. Other testing agencies reject that notion. The population study was going to establish whether this was the case, and could have resulted in a higher baseline if so... but the trade off was that if the league agreed to the population study then the players would have to agree they could not appeal the science behind the test in their appeals. So basically if that isn't going into the new policy, then future appeals could be longer and more drawn out as an arbitrator has to deal with issues of the science behind the test. Also might increase chances of an appeal succeeding if any holes are found in the science.

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Ian Rapport just said they are using the old tolerances to charge Gordon but the new drug suspension rules to suspended him. It's his 4th offense, 10 games in this case. Looks like the NFL picks and chooses what they want to follow. BS

The new policy is retroactive back to the beginning of the league year, which is March 11, 2014.

That's not BS. That's perfectly sensible. In fact, it's quite favorable to the players.

Think about how rules are changed in your own fantasy leagues. They're usually not retroactive at all. They usually don't take effect until next year. But when they do take effect during the current year, they'll only be enforced back to the beginning of the year. They're not going to go back and change results from the previous year.

Gordon's positive test occurred during the previous year. His suspension was handed down this year. That's why they're not disturbing the test results, but are adjusting the length of the suspension.

I thought Gordon got busted on March 6th.

Edited by Chaka

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<b>Pure speculation.... Another possible explanation for reports of a stage 4 thing is that multiple failed college tests are handled differently in the new policy.</b>

In the old policy, Gordon's 3 failed college tests landed him in Stage 1. The codeine was then Stage 2 and the marijuana Stage 3.

It could be in the new policy that, say, 1 failed college test gets you Stage 1, while 2 or more failed college tests gets you Stage 2. In which case the codeine would be Stage 3 and the marijuana Stage 4.

That would be consistent with the other explanation that they are not changing test results from before the league year, but are just applying whatever tests were failed to the new policy to see what level the person is at now.

The problem is, his last violation isn't a violation. It is hard to apply new punishment retroactively without consideration of if the new punishment should even be applied because one of the offenses isn't an offense.

Everyone including the reporters are taking their eye off the prize. Once you apply new punishment standards to past crimes you are acting retroactively.

The next step in Gordon's court is to apply the ability to reconsider whether his last offense should be reviewed.

Likely, there will be wording to allow him to appeal his last violation and plead it down.

It is not over. I say he ends up with 6-8 when all is said and done.

Why?
Why not? I explained why. Simply snarking "why" makes you as clever as any 5 year old.

No, you didn't give a reason as to why this one player would be allowed to plead it down. Other than the fact that you own him and hope this is what happens.

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I need to back up, as I missed this conversation the first 500 times. Disregarding the new policy for the moment, where were the advancements? He's only tested positive in the NFL twice, right? How do you get to a Stage III violation with only two positives? I think we can assume he entered in Stage I under the behavioral clause, based on his college positives and perhaps the falling asleep in the Taco Bell drive-thru episode. The first NFL positive (codeine) advanced him to Stage II. As I read the old policy, it takes TWO positives while in Stage II to be moved into Stage III. So why wouldn't he still be in Stage II after the second positive (weed) with one more positive between him and Stage III? And after that advancement he would still require yet another positive for a violation of Stage III. Even throwing in a doctor advancing him somewhere along the way, which is a second assumption, he's still not at a violation of Stage III. I don't see how there isn't at least one more positive that we don't know about, if not more.

Edited by Apple Jack

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I need to back up, as I missed this conversation the first 500 times. Disregarding the new policy for the moment, where were the advancements? He's only tested positive in the NFL twice, right? How do you get to a Stage III violation with only two positives? I think we can assume he entered in Stage I under the behavioral clause, based on his college positives and perhaps the falling asleep in the Taco Bell drive-thru episode. The first NFL positive (codeine) advanced him to Stage II. As I read the old policy, it takes TWO positives while in Stage II to be moved into Stage III. So why wouldn't he still be in Stage II after the second positive (weed) with one more positive between him and Stage III? And after that advancement he would still require yet another positive for a violation of Stage III. Even throwing in a doctor advancing him somewhere along the way, which is a second assumption, he's still not at a violation of Stage III. I don't see how there isn't at least one more positive that we don't know about, if not more.

The NFL doesn't announce what stage people are in so it's left to us to guess based on reports and the punishments handed out.

Like I mentioned earlier, a player can enter Stage 1 for behavior and be advanced to Stage 2 based on the diagnosis of dependency. In fact if he's not advanced within 90 days he's supposed to be dropped out of Stage 1 in most (but not all) cases. You're right about it taking 2 tests to go from Stage 2 to Stage 3, I missed that earlier. So I would imagine the codeine was the first failed test at Stage 2, and then the marijuana failure immediately moved him to Stage 3 where he got the full year.

How he got to Stage 2 we can only guess at. With 3 failed tests in college it wouldn't be hard for me to imagine his diagnosis got him into Stage 2. But the falling asleep in the drive through thing could have been part of it too.

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I'm not suggesting it would have, but what I am saying is that the people who took a chance on Gordon will have an elite talent who would have been taken in the first round for a throw away choice that would have been used on a marginal player...The owners who drafted Gordon did a great job + will have a huge advantage come playoff time.

You really can't be serious if you expect Gordon to be productive in week 11 or 12. He will not hit the ground running and is likely to be borderline starter production for a few weeks. More likely a wasted season with a big play or two, but no monster games

You mean how he came in last year after being suspended and his first game of the year he put up 10/146/1? We differ in our definition of "borderline".

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I need to back up, as I missed this conversation the first 500 times. Disregarding the new policy for the moment, where were the advancements? He's only tested positive in the NFL twice, right? How do you get to a Stage III violation with only two positives? I think we can assume he entered in Stage I under the behavioral clause, based on his college positives and perhaps the falling asleep in the Taco Bell drive-thru episode. The first NFL positive (codeine) advanced him to Stage II. As I read the old policy, it takes TWO positives while in Stage II to be moved into Stage III. So why wouldn't he still be in Stage II after the second positive (weed) with one more positive between him and Stage III? And after that advancement he would still require yet another positive for a violation of Stage III. Even throwing in a doctor advancing him somewhere along the way, which is a second assumption, he's still not at a violation of Stage III. I don't see how there isn't at least one more positive that we don't know about, if not more.

The NFL doesn't announce what stage people are in so it's left to us to guess based on reports and the punishments handed out.

Like I mentioned earlier, a player can enter Stage 1 for behavior and be advanced to Stage 2 based on the diagnosis of dependency. In fact if he's not advanced within 90 days he's supposed to be dropped out of Stage 1 in most (but not all) cases. You're right about it taking 2 tests to go from Stage 2 to Stage 3, I missed that earlier. So I would imagine the codeine was the first failed test at Stage 2, and then the marijuana failure immediately moved him to Stage 3 where he got the full year.

How he got to Stage 2 we can only guess at. With 3 failed tests in college it wouldn't be hard for me to imagine his diagnosis got him into Stage 2. But the falling asleep in the drive through thing could have been part of it too.

As I interpret it, a second Stage II violation is still just 6 games and an advancement to Stage III. You don't get the year until a violation after being moved into Stage III.

(2) Discipline for Second Failure to Comply in Stage Two:

A player who has two Positive Tests in Stage Two; or fails twice, as determined by the Medical Director, to comply with his Treatment Plan in Stage Two; or has a Positive Test and fails to comply with his Treatment Plan, as determined by the Medical Director; or fails to cooperate with testing, treatment, evaluation or other requirements imposed on him by this Policy, as determined by the Medical Director, will incur:

(a) A suspension for the period of time to cover four consecutive regular and post season games (including the Pro Bowl, if selected) without pay if the player was fined pursuant to Section E.2.b.(1)(a) above; and

(b) A suspension for the period of time to cover six consecutive regular and post season games (including the Pro Bowl, if selected) without pay if the player was suspended pursuant to Section E.2.b.(1)(b) above.

If he has only tested positive twice, it sounds like this "Medical Director" has taken him to the woodshed a few times.

Edited by Apple Jack

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