Dec 30, 2012; Nashville, TN, USA; Tennessee Titans running back Chris Johnson (28) breaks away from Jacksonville Jaguars defensive lineman D.J. Mosley (99) during the second half at LP Field. Mandatory credit: Don McPeak-USA TODAY Sports

Chris Johnson Would Be A Good Fit In Dallas


Nov 14, 2013; Nashville, TN, USA; Tennessee Titans running back Chris Johnson (28) during the game against the Indianapolis Colts at LP Field. The Colts defeated the Titans 30-27. Mandatory Credit: Kirby Lee-USA TODAY Sports

With the free agency market coming to a crawl, a big name came free on Monday after the Tennessee Titans released Chris Johnson.  Johnson is a veteran running back in his seventh season who has run over 1,000 yards every year, including a 2,000 yard season in 2009.  Despite the fact that Dallas Cowboys starter DeMarco Murray is coming off his best season with 1,121 yards, he still has yet to play a full 16-game season.  In contrast, Johnson has missed just one game in the seven seasons of football, accounting for 95 games with nearly 8,000 yards in his career.

Johnson had a rough time last year gaining the yards last season as he had 3.9 yards per carry.  This was also during a 16-game season albeit.  Murray had an average of 5.2 in a 14-game season, the most he games has had in his career for one season.  When Murray went down last season, so did the running game.  The Cowboys had a good backup but he was also injured in Lance Dunbar.  Dunbar started strong but ended his season with a knee injury after having a Thanksgiving Day game to remember with 6.8 yard per carry performance against the Oakland Raiders.

What are the benefits of a Chris Johnson on the roster?  For one thing, there would be some stability at the running back position.  It is pretty sad that when I played Madden 25 for the first 3 times as the Cowboys, Murray was injured all three times.  Talk about a video game mocking reality?  Murray did have a good season last year but still leaves Dallas in the lurch with his injury problems.  Getting Johnson on board would be a positive as he could start and Murray could spell him during the course of the game.  He is going to be 29 years old in the NFL so he has a couple of good seasons left in him before he starts reaching the dreaded retirement age by NFL standards of somewhere in the 30’s.

Murray’s durability may benefit from Johnson’s presence.  He could actually have a chance to play every game on the schedule for once.  Not being the featured back may just very well be what Murray needs to complete a season.  Plus, Dallas could also not have to focus so much on the passing game when falling behind.

Dallas has indicated in a recent article that they are not interested in the running back and that they are happy with Murray behind the quarterback.  The question to ask: Is this the right move?

Dallas will be scratching their heads and wishing they jumped on the chance at Johnson for if and when Murray falls to another injury.  I don’t wish any one any type of injury but history isn’t on the side of Murray.  His inability to stay healthy has been a contributing factor to three 8-8 finishes.  Without consistency at the running game, the team is looking at more problems getting past that .500-mark.

Johnson does also have the problem of financials but the Cowboys have made it work in the past, team owner/GM/President Jerry Jones can figure a way to make the salary cap work in their favor for a player like Johnson.

Opportunities like a player like Johnson don’t happen like this very often this late in free agency, making a signing like this will show fans how serious Jones is to wanting to win.

Read my colleagues opposing take on this as Dan Krupinsky writes about how it wouldn’t make sense to sign Johnson.


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Tags: Chris Johnson Dallas Cowboys DeMarco Murray Jerry Jones

  • David

    Only if they signed him and traded Murray for a decent draft pick in this years draft..

  • PaulTX

    Is Garrett planning on running the ball this year?

  • Low Gin

    the cowboys line can’t block for an actually good RB let alone johnson

    • http://JPeezyGoinHam.Com/

      Demarrco Murray – 10th in league in rushing with 1121 yards averaging 5.2 yards per carry with 217 attempts while missing 3 games. He could of easily lead league in rushing yards had he played those games. So you saying the cowboys O line cant block is utter non-sense. Next time you make a non thought out opinionated comment please present some facts to support your claim.

      • Low Gin

        do you seriously think demarco murray is the tenth best rb in the league, because he’s better than that. and lets talk about how many times romo is rushed, sacked, and injured. so cool fact about murray, but I’m not impressed. and speaking of opinionated, murray is not leading the league. ap mccoy and lynch are better RBs in better positions to succeed.

        • http://JPeezyGoinHam.Com/

          Demarrco Murray attempts are no where to where the other rb such as AP MCCOY or Lynch. The teams that play on are run oriented except MCCoy in which they run alot of plays offensively. Demarrco is a top 5 back no doubt when he is healthy. You are correct that the other back are position to suceed. Those other teams dont have the offense power that Dallas has therefore they lean towards the run

          • Low Gin

            seattle could easily throw for 300+ yds a game if necessary, philly does throw a lot, ap is a work horse. they have firepower, they just opt to run

          • http://JPeezyGoinHam.Com/

            I highly doubt seattle can throw for 300+ a game there recieving core is medicore. Philly offense numbers are skrew do to all the plays they run. I doubt the success they had offensively last year will last just like the wildcat. Minnesota might have some weapons but know one to throw them the ball and also why not feed AP the ball. Minnesota runs the ball to control clock in hopes there defense can make some plays

          • Low Gin

            don’t doubt russell wilson, the guy has beautiful precision and that offense is a well oiled machine. minnesota is a qb away from being a good team. and the eagles success is a true enigma to me but i agree i don’t think they’ll find it to the same degree

  • BradAustin

    The really exciting thing about CJ is what he could do in our offense coming out of the backfield. Titans never had the ability to stretch the defense like we do. Witten clears guys out, Dez demands extra attention, Williams will improve and be a worthy target, All this translates into giving a fast RB like Johnson extra room to catch balls and then go to work against mismatches. Similar to what the Eagles got from LeSean McCoy in space with his past WR’s stretching the field. What most have seen from CJ in Tennessee is different from the opportunities he’d have as a receiving RB in the Dallas offense. He would flourish in that role here. That in addition to his running ability. Needless to say, I like the CJ addition as well.