Chris Johnson: Potential 2014 NFL Draft Replacements

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Dec 8, 2013; Denver, CO, USA; Tennessee Titans running back Chris Johnson (28) reacts on the sidelines late in the fourth quarter against the Denver Broncos at Sports Authority Field at Mile High. The Broncos defeated the Titans 51-28. Mandatory Credit: Ron Chenoy-USA TODAY Sports

The Tennessee Titans are starting over in 2014. They have a new coach and system on both sides of the ball, and with these changes will come even more changes.

One of the major changes is expected to happen at the running back position. Star back Chris Johnson is simply owed too much money for not producing at an elite level, and is fully expected to be released. The Titans still have veteran running back Shonn Greene to step up and try to fill Johnson’s shoes, but it’s more than arguable that he isn’t enough on his own – or more importantly – simply isn’t the long-term answer.

Green was twice a 1,000+ yard rusher while with the New York Jets, but didn’t blow the hinges off in his first season with the Titans last year. With that said, he wasn’t bad, and at the very worst can still provide effective play in short-yardage and goal-line situations.

With little depth or talent beyond Greene, the departure of Johnson should almost certainly have the Titans looking to add more talent to their offensive backfield. While that could easily mean Tennessee dips their toes into the free agency pool to pair a solid back with Greene, the smarter play is probably going to be looking to the 2014 NFL Draft.

Let’s take a look at five running backs Tennessee could consider taking in this year’s draft: