Chris Johnson has played in 95 total games has rushed for 7,965 yards and has 58 total touchdowns (50 rushing). His yards per attempt has gone down in every season since he rushed for 2,006 yards back in 2009 (except for 2012 when he rushed for 4.5 yards an attempt). Johnson had 1,077 rushing yards last season in 279 attempts, but Jet fans shouldn't worry about declining production because Johnson was the main running back in Tennessee. WIth Ivory and Powell Johnson's attempts should be closer towards 175-200 and he shouldn't be hit as much given he won't be the main back the whole game. Johnson is rarely injured so that is a plus. Johnson should bring an eagerness to win given that he has only made the playoffs once as a NFL player. One stat that is eye opening is Johnson's ability to break out for a big run, something the Jets haven't had in a long time. According to profootballfocus.com or PFF, Johnson has 491 rushes for 15+ yards and has a 39.5 career breakaway percentage, fifth best among all active running backs. To put that into perspective, in 2012 former Jets and current Titans running back Shonne Greene didn't even qualify for a breakaway percentage. He had no runs for 15+ yards that season, according to PFF, yet he ran for a little over 1,000 yards. Johnson adds something Jet fans aren't accustomed to, speed and homerun runs.
Given the deal is a two year eight million dollar deal, I don't see the Jets giving him more than four and a half million dollars guaranteed which means if he doesn't pan out they can always release him after one year. Johnson has an opportunity to get an extra million dollars in incentives and his goal at the end of the day is to show the Titans that they shouldn't have released him. Adding Johnson almost guarantees that the Jets won't draft a running back in the first four rounds of the NFL draft this year. With Geno Smith and Michael Vick, and with Powell, Ivory, and Johnson this is going to be the most competitive off-season at the two most important positions in football. HC Rex Ryan, offensive coordinator Marty Mornhinweg, and GM John Idzik will look to add a WR and a TE in the draft to make this an offense filled with weapons. The Jets have already added free agent WR Eric Decker from Denver, and former Eagles QB Michael Vick. The Eagles signed former QB Mark Sanchez so the QB battle will be between Geno Smith and Michael Vick. Geno is expected to be the starter week one. Add a veteran wide receiver like Sidney Rice and draft a guy like Brandon Cooks or Odell Bechham Jr, the Jets will be a defensive nightmare for opponents next year.
Overall the signing of Chris Johnson will make guys like Mike Goodson, Bilal Powell, and Chris Ivory compete harder then ever this off-season because one of them most likely will be cut. I expect the Jets to be top five in rushing and Chris Johnson adds a threat in the passing game in the backfield. That will cause the MLB or the OLB to keep a spy on Johnson which will provide room in the middle of the field for Jeremy Kerley or Erick Decker to explode. Jet fans should be ecstatic after this brilliant signing by GM John Idzik.