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Larry Johnson: “I feel like I’m still in my 20s”

Larry Johnson AP

Larry Johnson will turn 32 in November, is coming off a season in which he had five carries for two yards, and hasn’t gained 1,000 yards in a season since 2006. But don’t tell Johnson he’s over the hill.

In his first comments after being signed by the Miami Dolphins, Johnson insisted that he doesn’t have much wear and tear on his body, noting that for all the carries he logged in Kansas City, he actually wasn’t a starter with the Chiefs for very long.

I feel like I’m still in my 20s because I really never had to be thrown in as being a starter when I first got to Kansas City,” Johnson said. “I spent two or three years behind Priest [Holmes], two years on my own and then kind of moved on from there so I always felt that I was in good enough shape, body condition wise, to be able to play.”

It’s true that Johnson has only started 55 games — basically three and a half seasons — in his NFL career. But he has taken much, much more pounding than the average back, including an NFL-record 416 carries in 2006. The last time Johnson was a starter, in 2009, he averaged 2.9 yards a carry before the Chiefs cut him. He looked like he was shot last year, and it’s hard to see why he’d be any better now that he’s a year older.

Still, Johnson insists that he’s healthy and can perform at a high level.

“I haven’t gotten beaten up yet, you know, I’ve only had one injury in my whole nine-year career,” Johnson said. “I still feel fresher then some of the guys in the NFL . . . I feel a lot better than most backs.”

But it’s been a long time since Johnson looked a lot better than most backs.

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54 Responses to “Larry Johnson: “I feel like I’m still in my 20s””
  1. phillyisinvading says: Aug 23, 2011 7:30 PM

    Would be a great pickup for the Jets.

  2. maddensbrother says: Aug 23, 2011 7:31 PM

    Lol.

  3. jhart615 says: Aug 23, 2011 7:33 PM

    yeah man you really showed it up in washington…

  4. trbowman says: Aug 23, 2011 7:45 PM

    The Dolphins pick up a has-been and they think Bush can be an effective running back for them.

    lol.

    Not to mention they drafted a grossly overrated back in Daniel Thomas.

    At least any guy can be an effective rusher behind a good enough offensive line, but Miami doesn’t have that.

  5. capslockkey says: Aug 23, 2011 7:48 PM

    Too bad Miami doesn’t have the same kind line you had when you were 26. My grandma could have rushed for 1,000 yards behind that line.

  6. wheresmyjuice says: Aug 23, 2011 7:51 PM

    You’re not.

  7. scudbot says: Aug 23, 2011 7:58 PM

    Wait till Fat Albert falls on you.

  8. skylark70455 says: Aug 23, 2011 8:00 PM

    jhart615 says: “yeah man you really showed it up in washington”

    Yeah man, because everyone knows the Redskins have the 2nd coming of the “Hog’s” for an offensive line up there the last several years…. which must be 2nd only to the fabulous O line in KC in 2009. lol

  9. philyeagles5 says: Aug 23, 2011 8:04 PM

    jhart615 says:
    Aug 23, 2011 7:33 PM
    yeah man you really showed it up in washington…
    =============================
    the problem is no one shows it up in Washington. maybe Washington is the problem.

  10. rajbais says: Aug 23, 2011 8:05 PM

    Well, I feel like I’m 12 when I jump up and down on a bed!!!!!

  11. schemefactory says: Aug 23, 2011 8:07 PM

    running backs are a dime a dozen. they ALL say the same crud when they’re getting old. (old for a back) “i don’t feel old…. there’s more gas in the tank…etc.” a running back has a shelf life, and, especially when they get up in the 400 carry in one season range (ask jamaal anderson) it takes years off their shelflife. the human body can only withstand so much pounding. (ask jenna jamison) and forced retirement is never foreseen for some reason by those who are used to succeeding by willing themselves through adversity.

  12. themanchine says: Aug 23, 2011 8:11 PM

    skylark70455 says:
    Aug 23, 2011 8:00 PM

    The RB’s that DID look good last year played behind the same line as LJ did. Matter of fact, Torain ran behind the depleted version and still looked much better.

  13. Topher says: Aug 23, 2011 8:21 PM

    Feels like you are in your twenties… Plays like you are in your forties.

  14. skins23 says: Aug 23, 2011 8:28 PM

    He was freakin terrible in Washington. If youre getting outplayed badly by Ryan Torain, not much hope for you.

  15. dlmcc1010 says: Aug 23, 2011 8:28 PM

    This dude’s been washed up for years. You could have brought in an undrafted RB, at least he would have fresh legs. Larry Johnson can thank Herm Edwards for that one year he had like 450 carries. He was never right after that

  16. jcampol says: Aug 23, 2011 8:31 PM

    Not to mention they drafted a grossly overrated back in Daniel Thomas.

    I don’t think a late 2nd round draft pick is grossly overrated, especially when he hasn’t played a meaningful down yet. I don’t think he’s going to be the next Walter Payton, but to call a rookie who hasn’t played a game yet overrated is a little ridiculous.

  17. readysethike says: Aug 23, 2011 8:32 PM

    Yeah id still feel like I was in my 20s if I knew id be living in miami for a year

  18. russin010 says: Aug 23, 2011 8:33 PM

    Coincidentally I also feel like I’m in my 20s. Oh wait, I am.

    -Clinton Portis

  19. iplaybingowitholdpeopleandwin says: Aug 23, 2011 8:43 PM

    Dude, you’re fresh because you rarely played. Not to mention you’ve only played a full season 2x in your career.

    First, in KC, you sat behind Priest Holmes. Then you got cut for being a Diva. While in Cinci and Washington, you showed that an 80 year old woman in a walker could get more yards per carry.

    C’mon man!

  20. cheezysmegma says: Aug 23, 2011 8:44 PM

    If it were not for that “between the earholes” problem LJ has…..

  21. sbxxix says: Aug 23, 2011 8:45 PM

    I don’t think anyone really cares… There are 2 back ups in SF who looked better than you LJ. Just calling it as I see it. You were good at one point but your O Line was better. Oh btw the more you talk the older you sound. Just play and do your talking on the field. We hate all you talkers. Just because we write about you doesn’t mean we like you. Laughing at you not with you buddy. Thanks

    619

  22. hookset12 says: Aug 23, 2011 8:52 PM

    Rb’s are almost totally dependent on the quality of their o-line. Just look how his numbers dropped when guys started retiring.

  23. lostsok says: Aug 23, 2011 9:13 PM

    Good news for LJ: he only has to beat out Lex Hilliard as the #3 or Lou Polite as the smashback.

    He’s NOT in competition with Daniel Thomas, no matter what anyone says. Sporano said two weeks ago he wanted an experienced back on the roster, and they’ve publicly looked at 3-4 (and who knows how many that the local fishwraps didn’t hear about).

    IF he makes the team he’ll get 3-5 carries. The only thing that makes this more than a footnote transaction is the fact that he used to be Larry Johnson.

  24. kevo126 says: Aug 23, 2011 9:14 PM

    well you dont play like your in your 20′s…

  25. frankdatank23 says: Aug 23, 2011 9:19 PM

    daniel thomas compares his running style to larry johnson’s….. he never thought he’d be battling with him for carries. i dont think thomasbis overrated or a bust, i just dont think hes going to be an instant hit…. see: shonne greene

  26. Picked_Off says: Aug 23, 2011 9:34 PM

    This guy didn’t have much tread left on the tires after college. He’s lucky he got to sit bench as long as he did in KC or he wouldn’t even be somewhat relevant now.

  27. mwcarolina says: Aug 23, 2011 9:43 PM

    Yeah man, because everyone knows the Redskins have the 2nd coming of the “Hog’s” for an offensive line up there the last several years…. which must be 2nd only to the fabulous O line in KC in 2009. lol
    ————————————————————
    Tim Hightower and Ryan Torian looked better than Larry Johnson last year, it had nothing to do with the offensive line. it wasnt good, but if you think that the o-line was the reason Johnson was cut after the preseason then you need to watch him more last year than watch how Torian ran.

  28. sclazo says: Aug 23, 2011 10:12 PM

    And the trolls come out to play. LJ was not signed to be a starter. He is nothing but depth at this moment. If he returns to form it’s all plus for Miami. If not then Miami lost nothing and he will be cut. LJ 31 RW 35. Brown wanted a long term contract and is injury prone. No thanks only completed 2 NFL seasons in his 5 years and broke 1k yards once. Ricky is a flake. Fumbles too much and talked smack about the coach in the off season. No way was he coming back.

  29. snakeplizkn says: Aug 23, 2011 10:22 PM

    Eddie George feels pretty good these days too.

  30. blackbug99 says: Aug 23, 2011 10:34 PM

    “Larry Johnson: “I feel like I’m still in my 20s”…LOL, what guy over 30 hasn’t said this?

  31. 00reo says: Aug 23, 2011 10:35 PM

    Too bad he sucked when he was in his 20s too…. just played w/ a massive OL.

  32. mnfaninaz says: Aug 23, 2011 10:37 PM

    Thank god the Vikes only go after washed up QB’s and not washed up running backs… whew!

  33. fillyfan9988 says: Aug 23, 2011 11:01 PM

    Larry Johnson: “I feel like I’m still in my 20s”.Sorry Larry,you play like you were BORN in the 1920′s.

  34. theytukrjobs says: Aug 23, 2011 11:06 PM

    Upright runners are rare in the NFL but usually put up big numbers in abreviated careers.

    Ryan Grant, Steven Jackson, and Adrian Peterson come to mind. Peterson is the only upright runner that I’m aware of who is still considered great after several seasons. But each one of them has done their share of damage in the NFL.

    Most runners who hang around are compact and beefy.

  35. riverhorsey says: Aug 23, 2011 11:15 PM

    In fairness to LJ he should of been drafted by a team that needed a RB.

  36. freedomispopular says: Aug 23, 2011 11:23 PM

    So he still hasn’t taken the diapers off?

  37. majikalmushr0om says: Aug 23, 2011 11:27 PM

    Well last year me and Larry Johnson were having a competition who could run for more yards. He beat me by 3 yards.

    P.S. I bag groceries for a living.

  38. marshmont says: Aug 23, 2011 11:33 PM

    he feels like he was born in the 20′s?

  39. dvnelson72 says: Aug 23, 2011 11:45 PM

    Ladies of south beach: beware of flying spit, drinks, and slurs. That is all.

  40. gottapoop says: Aug 23, 2011 11:46 PM

    Is it because he is as broke as he was when he was 20? or is it maybe the way he acts like he is 20. He is telling somewhat of the truth I guess

  41. dirtdawg55 says: Aug 23, 2011 11:54 PM

    Yes Larry, you are still in your 20′s. That’s because IQ doesn’t change over time. Huh? You were talking about your age? Ah, never mind …

  42. ICDogg says: Aug 24, 2011 12:05 AM

    Insert grandmama remark here

  43. rayjayjohnsonjr says: Aug 24, 2011 12:26 AM

    Sorry to say Larry but, instead of you still being in your twenties, your gas tank was last filled in the twenties…see the difference?

  44. stonecld33 says: Aug 24, 2011 12:31 AM

    Umm yeah his 5 carries he had in Washington was a real good evaluation on how he runs. And Adrian Peterson would suck if he were on the bengals

  45. justentertainingthestupid says: Aug 24, 2011 12:34 AM

    I hope everyone on this message board besides Dolphins fans dies in a fire.

  46. hailvictory10 says: Aug 24, 2011 1:37 AM

    You guys on this site are all haters……IF LJ is in shape and HE WANTS to play, he can play well……LJ has fresh legs

    I believe LJ wants to be a superstar again, if he has a couple good games, and get rolling….watch out!!!!

    TRUST ME!!!

    LJ CAN PLAY

    Dont listen to the haters LJ ….play some ball

    oh yeah….Hail to the Redskins

  47. hailvictory10 says: Aug 24, 2011 1:42 AM

    AND…. the reason LJ didnt get a chance in DC was not fair…..if you watched the preseason games last year (which I am sure none of you did, you were to busy eating chips and “chatting” online)

    LJ only got less then 10 carries

    he was never given a chance by coach Shanahan…..for what reason, I don’t know

    BUT, i believe in LJ, the man just a couple years ago literally DOMINATED the league…..and now everyone hates on him

    so confused……cant wait ’till LJ plows over some NY Jet trash and some FAT AL garbage in NE

    CRUSH THEM LARRY!!!!!!

    HTTR for LIFE

  48. ugaboogaloo says: Aug 24, 2011 2:05 AM

    Sounds like he’s the one with early-onset dementia.

  49. phaktor333 says: Aug 24, 2011 2:21 AM

    It’s true that Johnson has only started 55 games — basically three and a half seasons — in his NFL career. In essence, that is the average length of an NFL career. He’s done.

  50. hailvictory10 says: Aug 24, 2011 4:29 AM

    YOURE DONE

  51. mmcdan13 says: Aug 24, 2011 5:52 AM

    Guy had two great seasons running behind Willie Roaf, Will Shields, Brian Waters, Casey Wiegmann and Tony Richardson. I could go for 1500 behind that collection of beef.

    I live in KC, and I was subjected to this guy’s act for over 5 years. I celebrated the day he left, and I’m shocked he’s back in the league. World class jerk.

  52. tv426 says: Aug 24, 2011 8:36 AM

    He feels like he is in his 20s but runs like he is in his 50s.

  53. skinsfandcdan83 says: Aug 24, 2011 9:33 AM

    LJ is a bum!!

  54. raiderinpa says: Aug 25, 2011 11:01 AM

    He’s in his 30′s, feels like he’s in his 20′s and acts like he’s 3…. Im PSU alumni and not a PS football fan, but what a disgrace to the organization and JoePa LJ is…

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