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Josh Gordon’s agent pushing for investigation of confidentiality breach


As of this morning, the NFL Players Association and representatives for Browns receiver Josh Gordon were discussing the possibility of seeking an investigation regarding the leaks of confidential information that have occurred over the past two days. PFT has now learned that Gordon wants something more than discussions.

Per a source with knowledge of the situation, Gordon’s agent, Drew Rosenhaus, is pursuing with the NFL Players Association a potential investigation.

On Monday, someone leaked to multiple outlets that Gordon tested positive last month. Specifically, Mike Garafolo of FOX Sports reported that Gordon’s sample (in both the “A” bottle and “B” bottle) were determined to be dilute and “positive for marijuana.”

But the samples weren’t “positive for marijuana.” The amount of marijuana in the samples was below the 35 ng/ml minimum, making them necessarily negative for marijuana. This distinction makes the confidentiality breach more troubling; no one ever should have known that marijuana was found in Gordon’s sample, given that it was below the 35 ng/ml limit.

Likewise, a dilute specimen is technically positive for nothing. The term means that the specimen has a specific gravity value less than 1.003 and a creatinine concentration of less than 20 mg/dL. The NFL’s policy deems the same under these circumstances to be a positive test, even though it’s technically positive for nothing.

On Tuesday, someone leaked to ESPN that the NFL wants to see Gordon get through the next two or three months without another positive test before reinstating him.

Taken together, these reports explain the NFL’s ongoing failure to act on Gordon’s reinstatement application. However, they also constitute separate and clear violations of the confidentiality provision.

If the confidentiality provision is going to be ignored, the league should just get rid of it. Otherwise, it becomes yet another standard that the league enforces only when it wants to, not when it should.