Chris Johnson and the Titans have finally agreed on a four-year, $53.5 million contract extension with $30 million in guaranteed money. The contract ends a long standoff between the running back and Tennessee.
Johnson still has two years left on his five-year, $12 million contract signed after being drafted in 2008. Since then, the running back has accumulated over 4,500 yards rushing, 1,000 yards receiving and 38 touchdowns.
The four years will be tacked onto the two years remaining on his current contract and will keep Johnson playing for the Titans through the 2016 season. Last year, the running back threatened a holdout but eventually agreed to a revised deal that gave him a slight raise.
Johnson missed all of training camp and the first three weeks of the preseason while he waited for Tennessee to finalize the contract. Earlier this week, the running back was placed on the Reserve/Did Not Report list. He will not play in the team’s preseason finale Thursday but is scheduled to play in Tennessee’s Week 1 game at Jacksonville.
Although the deal was finalized on Thursday, Johnson tweeted Wednesday night that he was, “In Orlando downtown at the chophouse with Joel (his agent) talking business over dinner.”
Fans criticized the running back of seeking big dollars, saying he was being greedy for holding out as the regular season drew closer. Johnson addressed the comments by tweeting, “Can these fake Titan fans STFU on my timeline I don’t have a regular job so don’t compare me to you and I can care less if uthink I’m greedy.”
According to reports, the $30 million in guarantees is a large number for a running back, a position with the shortest shelf life in the league. During the 2009 season, Johnson topped the rare 2000-yard mark and had a 1,300-yard effort in 2010. Johnson is the only running back since 2008 to have rushed more than 4,598 yards.