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Sashi: Browns 'not in position' to dump Josh Gordon

Are the Browns willing to part ways with eternally suspended wideout Josh Gordon?

It doesn't sound like it.

"We're not in a position at wide receiver to turn down a guy like Josh if we feel like he's settled himself," Browns executive VP of football operations Sashi Brown said Tuesday at the Annual League Meeting in Phoenix, per the Akron Beacon Journal.

In the process of applying for NFL reinstatement, Gordon hasn't appeared in a regular-season game since 2014. The 25-year-old wideout voluntarily entered an in-patient rehabilitation facility last October to, as he stated, "gain full control of my life."

"Now, that's a separate question," Brown said of Gordon's off-the-field issues, "but Josh is going to have an opportunity to reapply to the NFL, and, at that time, we'll make a decision when we know what's going on."

Last season, Browns coach Hue Jackson told reporters the team planned to "close that chapter" on Gordon, saying: "We're moving on."

Brown, though, sang a different tune on Tuesday night.

"Josh, assuming that he'd play at the level we started to see glimpses of last preseason and certainly when he was in the league before, would be a talent I think no team in the NFL would turn down if he got back in," Brown said. "Our decision with Josh is just understanding where he is in his process and being able to add him."

Gordon's business manager, Michael Johnson, told ESPN last month that "Josh is living with me and is in the best place mentally that he has been in dating back years before entering the NFL."

Said Johnson: "He has taken the proper steps to treat his issues and has followed a very strict protocol that the league and our team here has laid out for him. He's also in the best shape of his life and feels even better than he did when he had his breakout year in 2013. This will be a special year for Josh and we are all very proud of the way he has taken the necessary steps to turn his life around."

If true, the Browns hardly have the in-house firepower to wave farewell to a young player who looked utterly dominant last summer.

Gordon, the NFL's leading receiver from 2013, has burned the Browns and their fan base for years but a worse scenario exists: letting him float away -- finally healthy -- to the Steelers, Ravens or Bengals.

It's completely unclear if Gordon will ever play again, but if he finally produces, it should happen with the team that's stood by him since Day 1.

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