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Impact of Gordon suspension on Browns

How much will the Browns miss Josh Gordon during his 2-game suspension?

David Richard-USA TODAY Sports

Earlier this month, Cleveland Browns' receiver Josh Gordon was handed a 2-game suspension to start the 2013 season for violating the NFL's substance abuse policy. Gordon claims he used cough medicine containing codeine to recover from strep throat.

A lot of analysts believe the Browns have a shot to be a sleeper team in the AFC North race this year due to questions regarding the strengths of both the Steelers and Ravens entering the 2013 season. The loss of Gordon for the 2 games of the season, however, could put the Browns in dire straights.

Josh Gordon, a rookie in 2012, burst onto the scene last season for the Cleveland Browns as a legitimate deep threat and playmaker on the offensive side of the ball. He led the team with 805 receiving yards and 5 touchdowns in 2012. His absence in the first two games will surely be noticeable for an offense that boasts a rather weak receiving corps and lacks any real home-run threats aside from Gordon, especially after Josh Cribbs' departure through free agency. The team will have to rely on Greg Little, who led the team in receptions (53) in 2012, and Davone Bess, who was acquired from Miami this offseason via free agency. If Bess and Little fail to produce, the Browns could be in a lot of trouble offensively with an unproven quarterback in Brandon Weeden at the helm.