Josh Gordon is thriving again, and this time it’s for the XFL. The league created by Vincent Kennedy McMahon, now run by The Rock, is back, providing an alternative for fans and another opportunity for NFL hopefuls and former players to grab a check for playing the game they love. While some XFLers will look to use the league as a potential catapult to the NFL, players like Gordon are likely on their last legs in professional football.
Despite his NFL career never fully panning out, Gordon has shown through three XFL games with the Seattle Sea Dragons that he still has gas left in the tank. On Saturday, the former All-Pro wide receiver made it look easy by catching six passes for 118 yards and two touchdowns, including a game-winning 65-yard grab with less than a minute left in regulation.
It’s a little weird watching the former second-round pick (2012 NFL supplemental draft) in the XFL, as he looks like the best guy on the field on most plays. There’s clearly a gap between his level and play and most of the other players despite Gordon being nearly 32 years old. It’s like he’s in a weird space where he’s almost too good for any of these alternative leagues, but due to age and other factors, he’s no longer good enough to play at a high level consistently in the NFL.
Like every other player in the XFL, USFL, or Arena Football League (returning in 2024), Gordon probably has hopes of one last run in the NFL. Last season, Gordon was active for 14 games with the Chiefs and Titans and caught five passes for 32 yards on 14 targets. That came with Kansas City, as Gordon didn’t catch anything in Tennessee.
The XFL is only three games into their season, but Gordon already has 225 receiving yards, 13 receptions, and three TDs. He still knows how to find the end zone and rack up receiving yards. Whether this will be enough for an NFL team to take notice of the former Pro Bowler remains to be seen, but it is good to see Gordon on the field again after all the issues he’s had with substance abuse during his career. It seems he may have finally gotten that under control, and while it may be too late to relive his NFL dreams, Gordon looks happy just being on a football field, no matter what league he plays for.