Browns may not be done dealing
ESPN’s Adam Schefter reported Sunday that the Browns would be open to trading wide receivers Josh Gordon and Greg Little, the team’s most productive receivers in 2012. Little finished last season with a team-high 53 catches, while Gordon led the Browns with 805 yards and five touchdowns. The pair has been far less productive so far this season — Little had eight grabs for just 59 yards in two games, while Gordon was suspended for Weeks 1 and 2.
As with Richardson, though, both players were brought in by the Browns’ previous regime. Cleveland spent a second-round pick on Gordon during the 2012 supplemental draft, which left the franchise sitting out that round at the 2013 draft. (Picks immediately after the Browns’ vacated spot included Geno Smith, Robert Woods, Menelik Watson and Johnthan Banks.) Little, meanwhile, was a Round 2 selection back in 2011.
Both players still have time left on their rookie contracts — Little is signed through 2014, Gordon through 2015. That fact could help Cleveland move either player, and Gordon might be particularly attractive to a team willing to gamble on a possible top-two receiver. Gordon has shown immense promise during his brief time in the league, but this latest suspension under the league’s substance-abuse policy was his second transgression. A third slip-up would land him a year-long suspension.
Little has had off-field issues of his own, though he has yet to receive any punishment from the NFL. The 24-year-old was ticketed last week for driving with a suspended license, about a month after he was stopped for having expired plates and not all that far removed from wrecking his car while drag racing 127 miles per hour.
The problems for Gordon and Little could drive down the haul Cleveland is hoping to land ahead of the Oct. 29 trade deadline.
ESPN’s report also included news that the Browns are contemplating a major run at current Texans running back Ben Tate come the next free agency period. Tate, who has racked up nearly 1,400 yards behind Arian Foster since 2011, may bolt Houston after this season for a shot at a starting gig elsewhere. Tate should be in line for a huge uptick in salary from the $575K base he’s making this year, the final season of his rookie deal.
The 2014 RB class also could include big names such as Maurice Jones-Drew and Darren McFadden, each of whom will be an unrestricted free agent without a new contract.
Cleveland also could have plenty of possibilities come the draft. The Richardson trade left the Browns with 10 picks — including two first-rounders — in 2014.