WR Josh Gordon - New England Patriots
|6-3, 225||Born: 4-13-1991||College: Baylor||Drafted: Round 2, pick 2012|
Week 20: at Kansas City Chiefs
FBG says: Neutral matchup. Tom Brady and this Patriots passing offense dissected what was a very talented Chargers secondary in last week's Divisional round playoff victory. Most of their success came from short passes, but Brady was decisive and accurate as he matched season-highs in completions (34) and completion percentage (77.3). It also helped that Brady received excellent protection from his offensive line while Sony Michel was on a roll rushing the ball last week--both key pieces of this offense that must also work well for the New England passing attack to be successful this week. Julian Edelman has been the steadiest, most reliable contributor for this passing offense, and he actually had his best games of the year last week with a season-high 9 receptions for 151 yards. Edelman amassed at least 69 receiving yards per game and three total touchdowns over the last four games of the season, and after last week, it appears he and Brady are in complete sync. The usage of James White has been up and down this season, but the needle was way up last week as he led the team with a season-high 17 targets, hauling in 15 of them for 97 yards. White has the ability to be a focal point of the offense if given the opportunity, and he has consistently out-snapped Sony Michel in the backfield despite White's lack of involvement rushing the ball. His target volume was relatively low to close out the season though, and the massive performance last week has to be treated as an outlier. However, given the potential game script with the Patriots in what could be a shootout along with bad weather that could hinder down-field passing, White certainly could have a chance at repeating his performance from last week. Rob Gronkowski, on the other hand, will not want to repeat his outing from last week as he was targeted just one time. His involvement in this offense has primarily been in a blocking capacity with fewer than four targets in each of his past three games. The Chiefs defense looked like a transformed unit last week, particularly against the pass as they nullified the Colts passing offense that was unable to move the ball at all until the scoreboard was already out of hand. The Chiefs cornerbacks have played much better late this season, with Kendall Fuller looking especially dangerous covering slot receivers. Fuller helped keep tabs on Julian Edelman back in Week 6 as he held Edelman to just four receptions--just the third time all season any cornerback has held Edelman to four or fewer grabs. Safety, however, remains a weakness in this secondary as Eric Berry was again unable to suit up last week and remains questionable coming into this game, pending his practice participation. These Chiefs linebackers have contributed to a number of poor showings against pass-catching running backs also, leading to Kansas City allowing the fourth-most receiving yards per game (56) to opposing running backs in the regular season. James White racked up five receptions for 53 yards against them in Week 6 and should have a great shot at repeating in this matchup. Rob Gronkowski should also have a shot at making some plays as these safeties have proven incapable of covering big, athletic tight ends throughout the season. He racked up 97 yards on just three catches against them in Week 6, and when anywhere near the red zone, Gronkowski should pose a significant threat to score despite his low touchdown numbers amassed this season. What has changed for the Chiefs since Week 6, however, is the presence of Justin Houston, who was sidelined with an injury when these two teams last squared off. Houston has been a nightmare for opposing quarterbacks, accounting for at least one sack in five straight games with seven total sacks over that span, including two in last week's outing. He is one of the most talented edge rushers in the game and has a slew of talent around him on this defensive line that can get the best of nearly any offensive line in football. While the Patriots have a talented and cohesive group protecting Tom Brady, they will still be at a disadvantage against these pass-rushers that excel at applying constant pressure from all angles. Getting in Brady's face with pressure has proven to be the best way to stop him, and the Chiefs defense will have a good shot at doing just that in this matchup.
Recent Stats and Projections
Weekly Performance vs WR 1, WR 12, WR 24, WR 36
Josh Gordon's percentile rank in each category, among WR with more than 50 fantasy points.
Recent Game Summaries
2018 Week 15 vs PIT (2 / 1 / 19 / 0 rec)
The Patriots couldn't get multiple parts of their offense going in Week 15 and Josh Gordon was just one more piece not firing. Gordon's one reception and two targets sets season lows for Gordon on the season.
2018 Week 14 vs MIA (8 / 5 / 96 / 0 rec)
Tom Brady zeroed in on 3 receivers all day, and Josh Gordon was one of those 3. He picked up plenty of yards after catch on his receptions, at one point gaining 10 more yards after a hit on his first catch. In particular, Brady targeted Gordon 5 times when a Dolphins rookie CB was matched up against him. There were no true deep shots or superhuman plays, but it's clear Gordon is an integral part of the offense.
2018 Week 13 vs MIN (3 / 3 / 58 / 1 rec)
His volume wasn't strong as the Pats worked the short game, but Gordon did get wide open on his touchdown, finding a nice open spot in the middle of the field. He then raced into the end zone for a fairly easy score. Tom Brady also did a great job stepping up in the pocket in the face of pressure on the throw.
2018 Week 12 vs NYJ (5 / 5 / 70 / 0 rec)
Though he didn't reach the end zone, Gordon did have a few scripted passes thrown his way. It was also notable that Tom Brady looked his way twice eventually on plays where the Jets covered all receivers well, indicating rapport with his QB continues to improve.
2018 Week 10 vs TEN (12 / 4 / 81 / 0 rec)
Though Gordon had a nice deep catch, he also missed on some routes and catches, as evidenced by his 4 catches on 12 target line. Brady and Gordon were simply not on the same page, and many of Brady's throws to him were off target due to the pass rush constantly on Brady. There will be better days ahead, but it's also clear by now defenses are keying in on Gordon with Gronk out.
2018 Week 9 vs GB (10 / 5 / 130 / 1 rec)
Josh Gordon had a heck of a game, capped off by a 55 yard touchdown in the 4th quarter to help seal the win for the Patriots. On the play, Brady faked, then slung a pass to Gordon, who broke a tackle and run into the end zone untouched. Gordon was used on a variety of routes, showing off route running chops - slants, outs, a nice jumping chunk play, you name it. The increasing rapport with Brady is becoming more evident, and Gordon has the potential to pay huge dividends as long as he stays on the field.
2018 Week 8 vs BUF (6 / 4 / 42 / 0 rec)
After talk of discipline for Gordon, he ended up starting on the very first play of the game. He didn't do much beyond some slants and outs, though he did make a nice grab on one of those plays. He also missed a deep shot from Tom Brady that he could have caught. It wasn't clear if the ball got lost in the lights, but either way, he almost had a much bigger day.
2018 Week 7 vs CHI (7 / 4 / 100 / 0 rec)
It's clear Josh Gordon has earned Tom Brady's trust. Brady looked his way on a 4th down for a jump ball, which Gordon successfully caught for 19 yards with a leaping catch. Gordon's 55 yard catch-and-run came at a crucial period in the 4th quarter, and he would have scored had he not run out of gas near the end of the run. Gordon once again saw heavy snaps, logging 61, and continues to integrate. The sky is the limit.
2018 Week 6 vs KC (9 / 5 / 42 / 0 rec)
Gordon played the most snaps and saw the most targets of any Patriots receiver, as the Pats made a concerted effort to get him involved. Timing was off on a couple passes, but he snagged a few nice slant routes, and had a 37 yard P.I. call at the 1 yard line of the Chiefs. His talent is evident, and as he gets more time in with Tom Brady, huge days won't be surprising.
2018 Week 5 vs IND (4 / 2 / 50 / 1 rec)
Though he was once again on a limited snap count, Gordon made the most of it, catching Tom Brady's 500 touchdown pass. The ball was a prayer deep shot into the end zone, and Gordon managed to snag it between two defenders in what surely reminded viewers of a Brady-Moss connection. It showed good trust in Gordon, who should continue to work his way to a larger role.
2018 Week 4 vs MIA (2 / 2 / 32 / 0 rec)
Gordon was clearly on a snap count, but made two grabs and a couple key blocks as he earns Tom Brady's trust. The pitch count was likely due to a short upcoming week and monitoring his hamstring, but he came out unscathed and did what he needed to do. His role should continue to grow.
2018 Week 1 vs PIT (3 / 1 / 17 / 1 rec)
Gordon was rumored to be in on roughly only 20 snaps in Week 1, but he wound up playing on 78% of the offensive snaps (69-of-89). That being said, he was not used extensively, seeing just three targets. Gordon was able to get open frequently against one-on-one coverage but quarterback Tyrod Taylor preferred the short and intermediate passes to Jarvis Landry, David Njoku, and Duke Johnson. Gordon did manage to make his presence felt, turning his only catch into a 17-yard touchdown. Taylor threw the ball to the outside and Gordon went up over the defender to secure the catch right at the goal line. He had another deep end zone target in the fourth quarter but he was well-covered by cornerback Joe Haden. Gordon was the intended target on Taylor's fourth quarter interception but the pass was underthrown. The two didn't get much time to work together in the preseason with Gordon away from the team. Hopefully Gordon and Taylor develop more chemistry as the season goes on.
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