Explosive. Exciting. Dangerous. These are all words which sum up what the Jets’ offense was not last year. They do however, perfectly describe Chris Johnson. Luckily for the Jets and John Idzik they can acquire all of these things with a few simple phone calls. It seems to be against the Jets mantra to make a trade of this magnitude for a player like Johnson, but I personally would like to see the front office pull the trigger on this move.
CJ2K is only 28 years old and has a lot left in the tank. Yes, his stats haven’t been as flashy as his price tag since 2009. Despite this, I say we bring him into the fold. Imagine a backfield of Ivory and Johnson. Ivory seems to enjoy contact and could wear down defences consistently. While Johnson could come in and break off some big runs on a tired defence. The Jets signed Mike Goodson last season to be a quick twitch third down back that provides the offense with some explosion and home run ability. As we all know that didn’t work out too well. But that was more to do with his off field issues than impact in the games. After the suspension and before the ACL tear I thought that Goodson seemed to give the Jets an option they were sorely lacking. He provided speed and good hands out of the backfield. He only played in two games and had very few touches, but flashed especially against Atlanta.
Johnson is an infinitely better player than Goodson. I mean come on the guy rushed for 2,000 yards in 2009. This is no small achievement. I also don’t need to remind all the fans about his 94 yard touchdown in week 15 of 2012 against the Jets. Johnson may not be as highly valued as he once was but the Jets could use that speed as part of the rotation. He also proved himself as a reliable pass catcher last year hauling in four touchdowns. Another element the Jets could really use. This could allow for the development of the screen game, and provide Smith with a reliable big play check down option. This would open up the field for everyone else, as teams would have to respect Johnson’s speed or pay the price.
The main issue most will have with the move is how much he would cost, both in terms of a trade and salary. Well according to NFL.com Johnson is willing to accept a pay cut to get out of Tennessee, so surely he would be affordable. We paid $3 million a year for Goodson last year and Johnson is more polished in almost every facet of his game, so take from that what you will. In terms of trade cost I can’t imagine it would be more than a mid-round pick. After all, it is common knowledge that both sides wants out of that relationship. If Idzik views the trade as too costly then there is still a strong probability the Titans will have to cut Johnson eventually, giving the Jets an opportunity.
If the front office doesn’t pursue this move then that is fine. I just purely think it is worth considering. For the record I think Idzik has done a good job so far, avoiding hefty contracts. It is a far cry from the Tannenbaum regime but I certainly don’t think that is a bad thing. I’m interested to see what the rest of the fans think of this possible move…