The Tennessee Titans are ready to win some games now and aren’t going to sit back for another year to get assets, that is exactly what the Andre Johnson signing shows.
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That’s right, the Titans have signed veteran wide receiver Andre Johnson according to reports all across the NFL including Adam Schefter.
While many know Andre Johnson for his career rather than his past few years, let’s take a look at the work he has done since he has passed the peak of his career.
2013: 109 receptions, 1,407 yards, 5 TDs
2014: 85 receptions, 936 yards, 3 TDs
2015: 41 receptions, 503 yards, 4 TDs
That is a really interesting snapshot of his career. While he has dealt with nagging injuries during that time, a lot of that production drop off can be contributed to the rest of his offense.
In 2014, he was playing on a team that was 100% committed to the running game, and getting the ball to the tight end.
In 2015, he played with quarterbacks that shouldn’t be on an NFL roster, so it isn’t surprising that his production was bad at this point in his career.
What should his role be with the Titans?
I think this is the question for Andre Johnson. The one word I would use to describe Johnson over his career (aside from amazing) is professional. Aside from the incident where Cortland Finnegan pushed him over the edge, Johnson has never been a player to complain about targets or talk trash. Rather, he has always been a team first guy who has done whatever it took to win, even when that meant being a blocker often.
That is exactly what I imagine he will be for the Titans. A guy who shows the other young receivers how to be a professional. However, I think it is stupid to think that is all he will be.
I see his on the field responsibility as exactly what the Titans got out of Dorial Green-Beckham last year. He should have a few things that he does, but does exceptionally well. He should be a blocker (with his huge 6’3 frame) on rushing downs and a guy who can still win with routes and body positions.
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He is what DGB needs to aspire to be long-term, and if Andre Johnson can teach DGB how to be 80% of what he was at his peak, Marcus Mariota can do the rest.
With a team full of receivers with potential, Andre Johnson brings consistency and a fully polished skill set. While he should be a teacher, he should also be a nice contributor and he could very easily end with close to 600 yards this year given how accurate Marcus Mariota is.
If he gets on the same page with a veteran like Andre Johnson, while also having players like DGB and Tajae Sharpe go above and beyond, then this could be a huge signing despite the age.