Tag:Chris Johnson
Posted on: September 19, 2010 11:35 am
Edited on: September 19, 2010 12:05 pm

AFC Inactives: Week 2

Posted by Josh Katzowitz

Names of people who are ACTIVE include Todd Heap and Lardarius Webb.

Keith Rivers, LB, Bengals: He's been bothered by a bad foot, and that's bad news for the Bengals defense. Rivers might be the best LB on the roster, and Cincinnati's run defense will suffer from his absence. Brandon Johnson will take his place.

Jake Delhomme, QB, Browns:
This is no surprise. He was doubtful coming into the weekend with an ankle injury, and now, it's official. Seneca Wallace, who doesn't have the throwing potential of Delhomme but has good scrambling ability, will get the start.

Jon McGraw, FS, Chiefs:
He was expected to start - especially after being in the lineup in Week 1 - but instead, Kansas City's coaches are going with the youth movement. The Chiefs will start fifth-round pick Kendrick Lewis, who's exceeded expectations in his first season, and together with Eric Berry, that's a very young safeties corps.

William Hayes, DL, Titans: After missing the season-opener last week, it was thought Hayes possibly could play today. Hayes, in fact, said this week that if he was needed, he definitely could go against Pittsburgh. Ultimately, a lack of conditioning might have been the reason he's not playing.

Casey Hampton, NT, Steelers: With Titans RB Chris Johnson coming to town, this isn't great news for Pittsburgh, even though everybody knew this was going to happen. Chris Hoke likely will take his place.

Jared Gaither, OT, Ravens: The right side of Baltimore's offensive line still remains in limbo, because Gaither still hasn't recovered from his back injury. He says he's doing well and recovering, but that hasn't translated into anything on the field. Marshal Yanda gets the start in his place.

Ikaika Alama-Francis, LB, Dolphins:
He missed last week with an illness, and he was scratched about 90 minutes before Miami's win at Buffalo. Apparently, he's still sick, and apparently, Koa Misi, who had a good game last week, has passed him on the depth chart.

Paul Posluszny , LB, Bills: We knew this already. Posluszny is out a couple weeks with a knee injury. But it's worth noting that perhaps the happiest player about this news is Green Bay TE Jermichael Finley. He might be in for a big day.

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Posted on: September 17, 2010 7:29 pm

Chris Johnson vs. the Steelers front seven

C. Johnson hasn't had great success in the past against Pittsburgh (Getty). Posted by Josh Katzowitz

I wondered if Andy, in his weekly key matchup feature, would look at how the Steelers front seven would try to shut down Titans RB Chris Johnson.

Andy went with Michael Vick vs. the Lions defense (read it; it’s a fascinating look), so that leaves me to make sense of the Tennessee-Pittsburgh game.

Johnson, as you know, has 12-straight games where he’s rushed for at least 100 yards. That’s two off Barry Sanders’ all-time record. But remember, the Steelers are traditionally pretty good at stopping the run – in the past 35 games, an opponent has reached the century mark in rushing only once (Baltimore’s Ray Rice).

So, what will happen Sunday? Well, if the past is any indication, it could be a long day for Johnson. Last year, in the season opener, he gained 57 yards on 15 carries, and the season before, he was held to 69 yards.

But the past two seasons, Johnson – no matter what Adrian Peterson thinks – has been the best RB in the league. Yet the Steelers have their gameplan.

"It's a big priority,” OLB LaMarr Woodley told the Pittsburgh Post Gazette. "You stop the run, you force a team to go to its passing game, which allows us to bring a little heat and get to the quarterback.

"We hit him as a team (the past two seasons). We constantly got to him. When running backs are taking hits after hits from big guys, they slow down a little bit."

True, but not every team can boast the tackling skills of Woodley, James Farrior and James Harrison. This week, though, Johnson might catch a break because starting NT Casey Hampton is out for the game.

Most important for the Steelers is for the defense to maintain gap control.

"He's not real heavy but he's so fast and strong," NT Chris Hoke told the paper. "He jump-cuts on a dime, he's very quick at making his reads. You have to make sure you're gap-sound on every play because he gets a little crack and he's gone.

"It's easy for a guy like that, to get everybody a little over-excited – you want to make sure he doesn't make a big play so maybe you get out of your gap a little bit and you run to the ball and he cuts back when you're running to the ball. You have to make sure you stay square to the line of scrimmage so there is no cutback lane."

And what does Johnson – and his teammates – have to do in order to get that 100-yard game? The Titans offensive line has to work harder than the Steelers.

"One thing they do a lot of times is just outwork guys," Titans guard Leroy Harris told the Tennessean. "Every guy is working to the whistle, no matter what. Their technique is sound. They hold responsibility. They do their job. They outwork guys and they keep running to the ball.

"You can’t let the other guy outwork you. You don’t let the other guy make the play. We’ll do that. We also make sure we see the different looks they have and the blitzes they have. We get bodies on guys."

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Posted on: September 15, 2010 9:02 pm

Chris Johnson's most amazing stat yet

Posted by Andy Benoit

We all know that Chris Johnson posts video game numbers. He has a goal of rushing for 2,500 yards this season, which is crazy but, given he topped 2,000 last season, not ridiculously crazy.

Johnson is the best home run threat in the game today. And, after the little tidbit that Jim Wyatt of The Tennessean pointed out, he belongs in the discussion of best home run threat of all-time. Too soon? Chew on this: Johnson’s 76-yard touchdown run against the Raiders is the eighth touchdown of his career of 50 yards or more. It took Johnson 32 games to reach that mark. The next fastest guy to get eight 50-plus-yard rushing touchdown is Lenny Moore, who did it in 71 games. After that, Jim Brown, 77 games.

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Category: NFL
Posted on: September 9, 2010 7:45 pm

NFL Predictions from the F&R Crew

Posted by Will Brinson

It's prediction time, kiddos! And really, nothing's more awesome than putting yourself in charge of compiling these, creating HTML, squeezing them in just before the start of the first game and then being totally wrong a few months from now. The nice part is, you can make your own predictions below. Seriously, you can, and we're interested. So comment away. Or don't -- this post will be here all season long so you come back and remember just how right we all were.

Award Josh Andy Will
SB  Champs Colts Colts Falcons
NFC Champs Packers Saints Falcons
AFC Champs Colts Colts Chargers
NFC South
Saints Saints Falcons
NFC North Vikings
Packers Packers
NFC East Cowboys Cowboys Eagles
NFC West 49ers 49ers 49ers
AFC South
Colts Colts Colts
AFC North Bengals Ravens Bengals
AFC East Jets Patriots Patriots
AFC West Chargers Chargers Chargers
MVP Peyton Manning Aaron Rodgers Philip Rivers
Coach Jim Caldwell Mike Tomlin Norv Turner
Offensive POY Chris Johnson Aaron Rodgers Aaron Rodgers
Defensive POY Darrelle Revis Troy Polamalu Patrick Willis
Offensive Rookie Ryan Mathews Jahvid Best Ryan Mathews
Defensive Rookie Ndamukong Suh Brandon Graham Sean Weatherspoon

Posted on: September 9, 2010 5:33 pm

Chris Johnson: 'I am the best back in the league'

Posted by Will Brinson

Yesterday, Adrian Peterson pointed out to the world that he believes he is the superior running back to Chris Johnson. As Andy noted, AP is wrong . However, he's totally allowed to be "confident" and "willing to think he's the best" and whatnot; he's still wrong though.

And, you'll never believe this, but CJ didn't just let AP's drift meaninglessly along. Nope, he wants to make sure everyone's aware he's the best, and he said as much on the Dan Patrick Show (via Titans Insider ).

"I feel like he is a good back, and any time he plays he is a player I like to watch play and things like that," Johnson said. "But when it’s competing against him as a player, I don’t think there is a back ahead of me."

Johnson was, however, willing to concede that Peterson might be bigger (which isn't really a concession anyway, since it's, you know, a fact), but added that "I wouldn't say he's stronger or faster."

You won't find a ton of people who will agree with Peterson here -- although "stronger" and "bigger" he can probably have -- and the reality is that there's only one to solve it: production this year.

Johnson obviously won the contest for "better back" in 2009, and I'm pretty confident he'll win it again in 2010 (although, actually, I think Maurice Jones-Drew ends up being the most productive back in the NFL, for whatever the hell that's worth). But any speculation is moot -- if AP wants to be considered the best back in the NFL, he needs to prove it on the field this year.

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Posted on: September 8, 2010 9:52 pm

Adrian Peterson is wrong

Posted by Andy Benoit

You gotta love Dan Patrick. No interviewer is better at getting to the point and asking someone exactly what everyone wants them to be asked. Patrick did this Wednesday on his radio show with guest Adrian Peterson. He asked the Vikings running back if he is a better player than Titans running back Chris Johnson. Peterson’s response? Yes. A. Peterson (US Presswire)

"[He's] not faster, stronger, anything," Peterson said. "You've got to understand…that's just the mentality that I have. I have ultimate respect for the guy and he's a heck of a player. I remember at one point and time me talking on the phone to Chris Johnson. He was telling me, 'I'm just a big fan of yours. I like your style.' Some [of the] advice that I gave him was, 'I play this game to be the best player ever to play the game. That's my mentality.'"

It’s worth noting that in July, Johnson told The Sporting News that there's "no way possible there should be a debate about who's the best running back in the NFL."

Since these two can’t seem to sort out the argument themselves, we’ll do it for them.

It’s actually not that complicated. First off, Peterson is NOT faster than Johnson – no running back is. But, obviously, Peterson is indeed stronger. That, however, may be the only distinct advantage he has.

Johnson has the better hands (both in terms of catching passes and not fumbling). Neither player is a very good blocker (though Peterson is less of a weakness than Johnson in this sense). Johnson is quicker, both in his first step and lateral agility. He’s more elusive. Johnson is also a smarter, more patient runner, primarily in the way he sets up his blocks and times his burst. Because of this, he’s the better inside runner. (If you’re crying B.S. at this assertion, you should know that Peterson averaged 4.2 yards per carry up the middle last year, while Johnson averaged 5.8. Inside running is more about vision and patience than power).

To be fair, Johnson runs behind the superior offensive line. But his speed and ability to outrush angles buttresses that offensive line.
Peterson is a great player. He’s the most violent runner in the game today (and perhaps in this era). But he’s not the best.

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Posted on: August 23, 2010 5:54 pm

Cardinals-Titans: what (or why) to watch

Posted by Andy Benoit

Matt Leinart and Vince Young are on the same field once again tonight. Don’t expect quite as many fireworks as four years ago in Pasadena. Both players are trying to get their respective 8-8 caliber teams over the hump. Problem is, both of these teams are 8-8 caliber in large part because of their quarterbacks.

If Leinart and Young don’t do it for you, here are a few more reasons to watch:

--Chris Johnson. If the Titans are smart, they won’t play the superstar running back more than one series (and if they’re really smart, they’ll sit Johnson the whole night). But that doesn’t mean the third-year sensation isn’t fun to watch. Whether he’s on the field or one the sidelines, count how many times ESPN cameras catch Johnson twitching his head. It’s one of those things where, after noticing it once, you’ll keep noticing it again and again and again and again. (Some people believe Johnson is flicking the dreadlocks out of his eyes. But that doesn’t explain why he twitches his head with his helmet on.)

--Titans tight end Jared Cook. Tennessee is hoping the second-year pro can assume a bigger role in the passing game. Expect Cook to get plenty of reps. He’s an outstanding raw athlete who also has the type of size that makes everyone around him look tiny.

--Cardinals rookie linebacker Darryl Washington. He’s essentially being asked to save Arizona’s depleted inside linebacking corps. How will he look on the big stage?

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Posted on: August 22, 2010 11:31 am

Could Oakland be a .500 team?

M. Bush is one piece of the puzzle that could help Oakland to a .500 season (AP). Posted by Josh Katzowitz

Yes, we know it’s the preseason, but the Raiders 32-17 beating of the Bears on Saturday night meant something to Jerry McDonald of the Contra Costa Times . It meant that dreaming of a .500 season isn’t a joke. It meant that, at long last, Oakland has real talent in its organization.

From the story:

When the pair of .500 hopefuls met on the field, the Raiders had decidedly more muscles to flex than did the Bears. They were bigger, faster, better, stronger, more explosive. And that was with Richard Seymour and Nnamdi Asomugha, the two biggest names on their defense, not even suited up. Starting cornerback Chris Johnson sat it out. Same goes for running back Darren McFadden and wide receivers Chaz Schilens and Darrius Heyward-Bey, all counted on to be important parts of this year’s team.

I don’t think the Raiders can compete with the Broncos and the Chargers in the AFC West – actually I’m almost positive about that – but it’s certainly possible the Raiders go 8-8 or … gasp! … record a winning record for the first time since 2002.

I just looked at their schedule, I can envision 7-9, but assuming Seymour and Asomugha play at a high level on defense, QB Jason Campbell plays solidly along with RBs McFadden and Michael Bush, and the underachieving offensive line can protect its quarterback, getting to .500 wouldn’t be a shock.

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The views expressed in this blog are solely those of the author and do not reflect the views of CBS Sports or CBSSports.com