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Return on hold: Browns receiver Josh Gordon checks into rehab

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The strange and unfortunate story of Cleveland Browns wide receiver Josh Gordon took another bizarre turn on Thursday.

One week away from being reinstated into the NFL, Gordon checked himself into a rehab facility, placing his return to the league on hold – again.

Gordon issued this statement through the Browns Thursday afternoon:

"After careful thought and deep consideration I've decided that I need to step away from pursuing my return to the Browns and my football career to enter an in-patient rehabilitation facility. This is the right decision for me and one that I hope will enable me to gain full control of my life and continue on a path to reach my full potential as a person. I appreciate the support of the NFL, NFLPA, the Browns, my teammates, my agent and the community through this extremely challenging process."

Gordon, who played collegiately at Baylor, has had a long history of suspensions from the league. He missed all of 2015 because of violations of the NFL's substance abuse policies. He also was suspended for 10 games in 2014 and 2 in 2013.

According to ESPN, Gordon was set to come off of his suspension after Week 4, when news broke on Thursday.

"We support Josh in taking this step to seek additional help and treatment," said Browns executive vice president of football operations Sashi Brown in a statement. "His singular focus must be on his own health. We want nothing more than for Josh to be successful personally and professionally and will not comment on his status with the organization at this time."

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Gordon led the NFL with 1,646 receiving yards in the 2013 season and looked like he was back in that form during the 2016 preseason. He caught two passes for 87 yards and a touchdown in his debut.

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