The Broncos have yet to reap the benefits of the Melvin Gordon-Phillip Lindsay running back combination. The two running backs have played together in a grand total of two games this entire season. And in both of those games one of their days would end early due to injury. Phillip Lindsay has been the running back to deal with injuries this season not Gordon. But that hasn’t stopped Gordon from missing time on the playing field, and he’s likely to miss more time down the road.
Gordon couldn’t play against the Patriots. It’s the only game he’s missed so far this year and it was due to an illness. No not COVID luckily. According to the Broncos he had strep throat. Except I really don’t believe that for a damn second.
Gordon was caught drinking and driving less than a week before the Patriots game. Arrested for a DUI on Tuesday with the game on Sunday. Gordon was going 71 in a 35 while drunk off his ass. He was lucky he didn’t get himself killed. He has spoken with the media and apologized for his actions recently. The apology is great. Gordon is human after all and we all make mistakes. Although that is a really big mistake and it makes the Broncos look real bad. So I think the DUI was the reason he wasn’t playing against the Patriots, not some illness.
The Patriots game isn’t the only game Gordon is going to miss this year either. Eventually he’s going to be suspended for his DUI. The NFL’s new CBA will make sure of that. The new Collective Bargaining Agreement has actually increased the baseline punishment from a 2 game suspension to a 3 game suspension. So minimum Gordon will miss three more games.
The three game suspension is a minimum too. So it could be more. It doesn’t matter how many games Gordon misses this year because when he is on the field he has been trash. The Melvin Gordon experiment in Denver has been a disaster. So far at least.
Gordon has tallied a hundred yards rushing in one game this season. It was against the Jets so not sure how much that counts. Outside of the Jets game Gordon hasn’t been able to get even 80 yards a game. While his yards per attempt hasn’t been bad, 4.3 Y/A, his ability to hang on to the ball has been awful.
Three fumbles in five games is bad. Real bad. For comparison the hometown hero Phillip Lindsay hasn’t fumbled once in his two years as a Bronco. Gordon fumbled in his first ever game as a Bronco. His fumbling problem is so bad he can’t even make a simple underhand toss on a flee flicker. This isn’t a new problem either. Gordon has 14 fumbles over the span of his career. Holding on to the ball just isn’t his forte.
The only bright spot for Gordon on the Broncos so far has been his ability to get in the end zone. He’s got 5 touchdowns in five games. Although two of those came against the Jets, and you had better fucking score against the worst team in football. His yards per attempt has been pretty solid too not going to deny that. But man his inability to protect the ball has been infuriating.
Part of the reason the Melvin Gordon experiment has failed so far has been injuries and illness. The Broncos haven’t seen Phillip Lindsay and Melvin Gordon play a full game together. It’s really hard to tell if the running back committee you’ve assembled works if it’s never finished a game. But between the DUI and the amount of fumbles Gordon has this year it’s pretty easy to say the Gordon experiment is off to a rough start.