Browns wide receiver Josh Gordon admitted he exceeded the expectations he had for himself entering this season, so it’s not surprising that he’s setting a lofty goal for 2014.
How lofty?
“Hands down just be outright the best wide receiver in the NFL,” Gordon said Thursday when asked what he hopes to accomplish in his third year with the Browns (4-11), who’ll visit the Pittsburgh Steelers (7-8) on Sunday in the season finale.
Gordon, 22, knows he must become more consistent to be considered the best at his position with Detroit Lions All-Pro Calvin Johnson standing in his way.
“You can never have too much consistency,” Gordon said. “I don’t think I have enough of it. I’m glad where I’m at right now, but I think I could always do a lot better.”
Still, Gordon has clearly established himself as the Browns’ most dangerous weapon, which is why the local chapter of the Pro Football Writers of America unanimously selected him as the team’s player of the year. He’ll also find out if he made the first Pro Bowl of his career when the all-stars are revealed at 9 p.m. Friday on NFL Network and NFL.com.
“I definitely hope so,” Gordon said when asked if he thinks he’ll be voted to the Pro Bowl. “If not, fine. If I’m in it, that’s wonderful, too.”
Despite missing the first two games of the season while serving a suspension for violating the NFL’s substance-abuse policy, Gordon has 80 catches for an NFL-leading and franchise-record 1,564 receiving yards and nine touchdowns. He has a chance to become the first Browns player to finish a season as the NFL’s leader in receiving yards. Johnson ranks second now with 1,492 receiving yards.
“At this point, I definitely want to make that a goal and finish on the top this season,” said Gordon, who’s averaging a league-leading 120.3 receiving yards per game and a league-leading 19.6 yards per catch.
The 6-foot-3, 225-pound Gordon has mind-boggling numbers. For example, he has averaged 47.6 yards on his 14 career touchdown receptions.
But Gordon is coming off back-to-back disappointing performances by his standards. He caught three passes for 67 yards and a touchdown in a 38-31 loss to the Chicago Bears on Dec. 15 and six passes for 97 yards this past weekend in a 24-13 loss to the New York Jets.