Blog Entry

Hasselbeck not worried by Chris Johnson's absence

Posted on: August 10, 2011 1:50 pm
Posted by Ryan Wilson

Still no sign of Chris Johnson in Tennessee. He wants a new contract (he's currently slated to make $800,000), but the Titans say they won't negotiate until he comes to camp. So Johnson remains MIA, even though the new collective bargaining agreement stipulates that if holdouts don't show up by August 9, they could lose a year of accrued free agency.

As's Josh Katzowitz wrote Tuesday, "Johnson probably isn’t worried about his free agent status because, assuming he gets the long-term deal that he wants, the year he’s losing won’t matter at all."

This assumes, of course, that Johnson gets paid. (While we think Johnson's one of the two best backs in the league, we don't think the Titans should give him "Adrian Peterson money" -- or anything close to it.)

This has to be very troubling for Johnson's teammates, the guys relying on him to help carry this offense in 2011, right? Not if you're talking to Tennessee's new (old) quarterback, Matt Hasselbeck, who will pull down $9 million this year to serve as Jake Locker's mentor and start a few games, too.

Appearing on the Dan Patrick Show, Hasselbeck was asked if he was more concerned about Johnson's holdout or Kenny Britt's string of off-field issues. “I’m not concerned about either one," he said, according to

Turns out, this isn't Hasselbeck's first holdout rodeo.

“I played in Seattle when Walter Jones was doing his holdout thing,” he said. “He was holding out and he’d show up on Wednesday before the first game. And the feeling in the building was, We know Walter Jones is good enough just to show up, and the best part about this is that there’s no chance he gets hurt. No chance someone rolls up on his ankle or knee or whatever. We know that we’re at least going to have him healthy.

"I’ve sort of been there,” he added. “Not stressing about that.”

And Johnson could probably show up the Wednesday before the first game and be productive, too. The difference is that the Seahawks would've been hard-pressed to win without Jones. For as good as Johnson is, the Titans can win without him. (Tennessee won 13 games CJ's rookie season, eight games in 2009 and six games in '10.) That's the nature of the game; you build an offense around a franchise QB and a left tackle who can protect him, not an all-galaxy running back.

We mentioned it last week but it Bears repeating here: the previous eight Super Bowl winners didn't have a high-priced, top-5 running back on the roster. What they did have, however, was a franchise quarterback. Teams can survive without one but not the other.

But hey, we applaud Johnson for his convictions. There's something to be said for not making stuff up.

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Since: Aug 10, 2011
Posted on: August 10, 2011 4:55 pm
This comment has been removed.

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Since: Dec 18, 2006
Posted on: August 10, 2011 4:05 pm

Hasselbeck not worried by Chris Johnson's absence

Why would Hasselsucks, his teammates, the Titans fans, the state of Tennessee, and fantasy football owners be worried, the season hasn't started yet. Now, comes week 1 and there is still no signs of him, that's when the crap hits the fan, until than, everyone is just happy that the NFL season is just a few weeks away.

Go Colts !!!!! 

Since: Jul 26, 2009
Posted on: August 10, 2011 3:29 pm

Hasselbeck not worried by Chris Johnson's absence

I think this will go past the 1st regular season game. Johnson has decided to amke a stand and wont back down at this point unless thr Titans agree to let his FA accrue and not Franchise him when he can be a FA. At anyrate it will make for some drama. As much as I liked Matt in Seattle (although he is about washed up) I would be pissed too if I saw him making 9 mil on the downhill part of his career with a very likely hood that he will not play all 16 games due to the recent pasts injury history and  I was a top 5 RB making 800000. Can't waitto see how this plays out.

Since: Nov 23, 2008
Posted on: August 10, 2011 3:29 pm

Hasselbeck not worried by Chris Johnson's absence

I think Hasselbeck is overpaid, but markets dictate contracts unfortunately. There has been more than a few serviceable running backs shuffled around this season, a few more on the market if I'm not mistaken.. Does he deserve more than 800K  oh yes, but as the article says.. when he can take a snap, drop back in the pocket and launch the ball 40 yards into a recievers hand he can make the money..  Don't see any superbowl rings on Barry Sander's fingers do you... 

Since: Dec 4, 2008
Posted on: August 10, 2011 3:22 pm

Hasselbeck not worried by Chris Johnson's absence

Without a doubt, CJ deserves much more than 800K.  But like they said, not Adrian Peterson money.  AP doesn't even deserve Adrian Peterson money; I'm sure Vikes fans will disagree.  But where has he gotten them so far?  He's hurt and misses time every year.  If AP doesn't have an incredible year this year, there will always be the memories of when he burst on the scene a few years ago.....but don't be looking for a Vikes SB ring anytime soon.....

Since: Aug 23, 2006
Posted on: August 10, 2011 2:45 pm

Hasselbeck not worried by Chris Johnson's absence

OK Hasselbeck making 9 mil, Johnson 800K - Would you be pissed?  Hey I believe in living up to you contract but if CJ sucked he would be cut ant the titans would owe him nothing.  He is the best and he should be paid.  That being said he needs to get to camp and let the negotiations begin.  I wouldn't play a down of regular season but you have to respect the team not negotiating with an employee that doesn’t show up for work.

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