The Tennessee Titans made official on Friday what many had seen coming for quite some time. The running back formerly known as CJ2K, AKA Chris Johnson, was officially released and is now a free agent, saving the Titans $6 million.
Over the course of the last three seasons, Johnson’s game has significantly deteriorated, and so has his value. He was slated to make $8 million this season and we all knew there was no way they were paying it. The going rate even for the top free agent running backs nowadays isn’t much more than $4 million.
I think Johnson will be lucky to get that.
Because of the market right now for running backs, and the fact that the Broncos need a veteran in the backfield to pair with Montee Ball, I think it makes a ton of sense for them to add Chris Johnson to the fold.
People can say what they want about Johnson but if he comes at a ‘fair’ price, meaning what Knowshon Moreno got or less, there’s no way the Broncos should pass on that opportunity.
Right now, you’re looking at going into the season with a pair of second year backs in Montee Ball and C.J. Anderson, as well as a third-year back and the guy in the doghouse, Ronnie Hillman.
I don’t view running back as a major area of need for Denver, but it’s a spot they could stand to add a veteran with the ability to contribute. They currently don’t have one of those. The Broncos also don’t have a ton of home run speed on the offense, as was evident last year. Demaryius Thomas has breakaway speed, but other contributors to Denver’s historic 2013 offense didn’t, at least in comparison. We saw on a couple of occasions what an athlete Julius Thomas is, and with Eric Decker now gone, his role will grow.
With Emmanuel Sanders now on the outside replacing Eric Decker, the Broncos have added at least a bit to their speed element offensively. I think getting a guy like Johnson who can provide you with 12-15 solid touches each game if need be could be a really smart move for John Elway and the Broncos.