Wednesday, April 16, 2014

Jets Ink Chris Johnson to 2-Year Deal

The New York Jets get their man. In desperate need to address their beleaguered running attack the Jets are reported to have completed a 2-year deal with former Tennessee Titans running back Chris Johnson.

Johnson, 29, who was released by the Titans a couple weeks ago, visited the Jets training facility in Florham Park on Tuesday, had a physical and was reported hanging out at a Brooklyn Nets game. On Wednesday he signed a two-year deal with New York; money was not disclosed as the story broke.

Johnson's release came from the fact that his productivity had been lagging the past few seasons, and there were reports that the new Titans regime was not crazy about his work ethic.

Whatever the case may be, the Jets are getting a serious upgrade in the backfield. He can generate big plays both in the backfield and in the passing game. With Chris Ivory as his understudy, Johnson will certainly have fresh legs when the Jets use him.

It wasn't that long ago that Johnson was one of the best running backs in the game. In 2009 he ran for 2,006 yards earning the nickname CJ2K. However, his numbers have declined since then. Twice in the last four seasons, he has just barely rushed for more than 1,000 yards. 2013 was his worst season, rushing for 1,077 yards and a 3.9 yards per carry average.

One would imagine that changing places and coming to the Jets might re-energize him. Plus the Jets have had success with aging backs in recent years. They got a lot out of Thomas Jones in 2009, and LaDainian Tomlinson in 2010. While, he is not old, Johnson is approaching the "decline" threshold of 30 years-old, this should be fun to see how he fools the experts.

The Jets offense looks better on paper now, then what it did months ago. They have a solid receiver in Eric Decker, likely a new starting quarterback in Michael Vick, and now Johnson. Look for Gang Green to go wide receiver and tight end in the draft to fill out the talent on the offensive side of the ball.

While, its a solid move, it's not one to get too excited about. We still have to see how Johnson adjusts to life in the Big City, and how this team comes together.

NOTES: NFL schedules will be released by the league on Tuesday, April 22. 

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