Patriots share thoughts, reactions to Josh Gordon suspension: 'He was a great teammate'

Several Patriots opened up about the news that Josh Gordon would not be with the team for the rest of the season at practice Thursday.

It was the first time the team practiced without Gordon since he joined the New England organization in September. Gordon announced earlier that morning he was stepping away from football in order to focus on his mental health. The NFL announced a short time later, Gordon was suspended indefinitely for violating the league’s substance abuse policy.  

“I felt bad for him,” safety and co-captain Devin McCourty said, via New England Sports Network. “The way you guys felt when you read it was how most of us probably felt.

“He was a great teammate. He worked his butt off while he was here. So I think for us as players, we wish him the best personally. … I think, as people, you feel for that. I mean, if you don’t, I guess you don’t, but I think as guys in this locker room, we care more about him and him getting well and all of those things more than him catching passes.”

Co-captains Matthew Slater (receiver) and David Andrews (center) also shared concern for Gordon, who has been open about his struggle with addiction and stated he’s been nothing but a great teammate in his time with the Patriots.

“I think first and foremost, your prayers are with Josh, and your concern is with him and what he’s dealing with, whatever that may be,” Slater said. “I think we have a tendency to become so infatuated with what’s going on on the football field as players, as media members, that we lose sight of what’s going on with the man sometimes, and our No. 1 concern is with him as a man.”

Andrews added: “I wish all the best for Josh. He was a great teammate. But I’m not really going to comment. It’s his situation. I’ll let him speak for himself on that.”

Cornerback Stephon Gilmore also shared his admiration and support for Gordon.

“He was a great teammate, a great guy,” Gilmore said. “So I think you just try to pray about it and just hope for the best for him.”