Blog Entry

Titans, Johnson agree to 4-year, $53.5M deal

Posted on: September 1, 2011 1:27 pm
Edited on: September 1, 2011 3:18 pm

Posted by Ryan Wilson

Chris Johnson has a new contract. According to the Tennessean's Jim Wyatt, the Titans and Johnson agreed to four-year, $53.5 million deal with $30 million in guarantees. It took all of training camp and almost the entire preseason, but one of the NFL's best running backs will return to Tennessee's backfield in time for the start of the regular season to do what he does best: take pressure off the offense and put it squarely on opposing defenses.

Last month, Titans general manager Mike Reinfeldt said that the organization was willing to make Johnson the NFL's highest-paid running back. Johnson wanted more, and the stalemate continued until Thursday.

Wyatt writes that Johnson was scheduled to make $1.065 million in 2011. With an average salary of $13.5 million, his contract not only makes him the NFL’s highest paid running back, it also puts him in a category among the game’s “elite” players.

Chris Johnson Gets Paid
Wyatt continues: The highest paid running backs in the league make roughly $9.5 million to $10.5 million per year annually over the first three years of the deal. Minnesota’s Adrian Peterson is scheduled to make $10.7 million in the final year of his contract. Last month, the Panthers reached a deal with running back DeAngelo Williams that gave him $21 million in guaranteed money.

Johnson and the Titans met last week but the two sides remained far apart on a new contract. On Wednesday there were reports that there was finally "positive movement for the first time," and, a day later, Johnson has a shiny, new deal. Now the running back will be under contract for the next six years through 2016. 

The 24th overall pick in the 2008 draft, Johnson led the NFL in yards rushing the past three seasons. In 2009, he became only the sixth man in NFL history to rush for at least 2,000 yards and ended the year with 2,006 yards.

The Titans, who wrap up the preseason Thursday night at New Orleans, wanted Johnson to at least have a few days of practice with new quarterback Matt Hasselbeck in a revised offense under coordinator Chris Palmer and new head coach Mike Munchak. The only other running back with any NFL carries is Javon Ringer with 59 in his career, and he has been hurt most of the preseason. Rookie Jamie Harper from Clemson started the past two preseason games for Tennessee.

Fullback Ahmard Hall said Tuesday that Johnson would have some work once he does arrive to learn the changes in Palmer's offense, especially with the different terminology. "You're going to have to think," Hall said, according to the Associated Press. "You're not going to just be able to roll in and hit the ground running as if coach (Mike) Heimerdinger were still here. Coach Palmer has put in a lot of good things, bu the language is different. He's definitely going to have to think. The sooner he gets in the better."

With Johnson's contract now out of the way, all that's left is to get Tennessee back to the playoffs. That journey starts in earnest on September 11 when the Titans face the Jaguars in the regular-season opener.

The Associated Press contributed to this report. 

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Since: Aug 22, 2010
Posted on: September 1, 2011 3:39 pm

Crazy Cash to be 2nd Best

In my opinion Adrian Peterson is still the best back in the leauge hands down. Unfortuntely the Titans wouldnt risk CJ holding out into the season, otherwise i'd say let him hold out as long as he wants and cost himself money. I never understood why players sign contracts that pay them less money as the years go buy. AP stands to make $10 million in the last year of his contract. CJ's contract had him barely pulling in $1 million, and thats only after they restructured it last season. But hey, he's got his "elite" payday and hopefully he didnt make the same mistake twice. Otherwise he'll be an older, less effective yet just as money hungry, version of himself 3 years in.

4 years/$53 million huh? How much you all think AP will pull in once his current contract is up?

Since: Jul 9, 2010
Posted on: September 1, 2011 3:36 pm

Titans, Johnson agree to 4-year, $53.5M deal

Totally agree with T Pitty. It is a business and he is all the Titan fans have had to brag about for the last few years. 

Since: Nov 20, 2006
Posted on: September 1, 2011 3:35 pm

Titans, Johnson agree to 4-year, $53.5M deal

Good for Chris! Stupid for the Titans. That's all.

Since: Nov 3, 2006
Posted on: September 1, 2011 3:34 pm

Titans, Johnson agree to 4-year, $53.5M deal

He isn't under contract for 6 years.  He is under contract until the next time he feels he is underpaid and then he will hold out again.  I realize these guys are good.  But when are the owners going to grow some and stop giving in?

Since: Dec 21, 2008
Posted on: September 1, 2011 3:29 pm

Titans, Johnson agree to 4-year, $53.5M deal

He pops a hammy in week 1.

Since: Apr 27, 2011
Posted on: September 1, 2011 3:24 pm

Titans, Johnson agree to 4-year, $53.5M deal

I totally agree...I don't blame CJ for fighting to get his Fair Market value while he has leverage. Running backs dont have a very long shelf life....Get that money while you can!!!!

Since: Nov 15, 2008
Posted on: September 1, 2011 3:22 pm

Titans, Johnson agree to 4-year, $53.5M deal

Ok so the sigh of relief you heard was from Fantasy owners.  Johnson is back and now has to get ready for the season and a new quarter back.  Let's see if the holdout has any effect on weeks 1 - 3.  I think he will hit the ground running but have to look at both sides - if your the opposing "D" then you'll probably be seeing his backside when he runs past.

Since: Jun 2, 2009
Posted on: September 1, 2011 3:21 pm

Titans, Johnson agree to 4-year, $53.5M deal

Good for him.  The NFL is a business and CJ2K has made his money.

Since: Dec 29, 2006
Posted on: September 1, 2011 3:18 pm

Titans, Johnson agree to 4-year, $53.5M deal

Dude, are you high?? CJ2K has rushed for more yards in the last 4 years than all of those guy's combined.  While I agree I would put AP ahead of Chris Johnson in terms of value, what has Foster done? He's had one great year so far. If Foster can put together 2 or 3 more seasons like last year then you can include him in the cnversation.  Ray Rice and Jamaal Charles are also elite backs but still not in the same league as CJ.   For all we know you're basing your judgement on talent based on fantasy football ratings, you dolt.

LOL........  You must be high.....

CJ's only played 3 years.....  CJCB2K has 4598 yards.....  AP has 5781....

So in the last 4 years as you put it, AP has outgained Johnson by himself.... 

Since: Sep 11, 2008
Posted on: September 1, 2011 3:16 pm

Titans, Johnson agree to 4-year, $53.5M deal

Two years from now he won't like this contract either. TOOL!

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