FOXBOROUGH -- The Patriots needed Josh Gordon Sunday against the Jets.
Antonio Brown was removed from the picture when he was released Friday afternoon and then Julian Edelman went down with a chest/rib injury towards the end of the first half. With James White missing the game due the birth of his son, there weren't many options left in the passing game for Tom Brady.
This meant Gordon was depended on much more than he would have been otherwise, and because of this he did whatever he could to stay on the field, fighting through a few injuries.
Gordon injured his left ring finger on one play late in the first half and received medical attention on the sideline, and then there was another play where he came down hard on his side along the sideline.
Visibly banged up, the wide receiver stayed in the game and contributed six catches on 11 targets for 83 yards.
"You know, some weeks are more painful than others," Gordon said. "Obviously, it’s not always that bad, but it’s part of the game. I don’t think anybody likes to get banged up or have to come out of the game, but it’s just the reality of it. I think the more important part is just like how many times can you get knocked down and come back? That’s my mindset, that’s my attitude, no matter if it doesn’t take me out all the way where I can’t physically do it, I’m going to be back out there within a couple plays. If medically I’m approved to do so, I’m going to go back out no matter what it is that’s hurt me."
His toughness impressed his teammates.
"He is a warrior," wide receiver Phillip Dorsett said. "He came back in the game and he knew we needed him."
Matthew Slater added: "We call that War Daddy Deluxe. He was out there taking hits, dislocating — I don’t know what he did to his finger, but I’m assuming it wasn’t good. He showed a lot of toughness today.”Edelman's X-rays reportedly came back negative, but if he is forced to miss extended time, Gordon will be forced into a much bigger role in the offense like on Sunday.