Josh Gordon reinstated by NFL, eligible to return to Patriots on Sunday

Josh Gordon reinstated by NFL, eligible to return to Patriots on Sunday

Josh Gordon appeared in 11 games last season for the Patriots and had three touchdown catches.

BOSTON — The National Football League reinstated New England Patriots wide receiver Josh Gordon almost eight months after his suspension for violating the league's substance-abuse policy.

The announcement from the league came at 6:40 p.m. Friday, about 10 minutes after ESPN's Adam Schefter first reported the news.

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As a member of the Patriots last season, Gordon appeared in 11 games and hauled in 40 receptions -- including three touchdowns -- for 720 yards. New England inked Gordon to a one-year, $2.025 million contract in April.

Gordon was suspended by the NFL on Dec. 20, four days after the Patriots lost at Pittsburgh in Week 15.

According to The Associated Press, Commissioner Roger Goodell informed Gordon on Friday of his reinstatement.

A league statement reportedly reads, "Subject to appropriate progress on clinical care and other arrangements, he [Gordon] will be permitted to participate in team activities, including practice." ​Before that, Gordon will be allowed to attend team meetings, individual workouts and conditioning exercises.

The AP is also reporting that Gordon is not allowed to play in next Thursday's game against Carolina because of, "a lack of sufficient conditioning and practice time."

Gordon has been suspended multiple times by the league for violations of their substance-abuse policy since he was drafted in 2012. Last season, he was again suspended for violating the same policy, which went against terms of his reinstatement.

The Cleveland Browns drafted Gordon before trading him six years later to the Patriots.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.