Report: Stevie Johnson wants $7.5 million per year

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As Bills receiver Stevie Johnson approaches the final 60 minutes of his rookie contract, the question of whether he’ll remain with the team soon will become an even hotter topic in one of the league’s coldest climates.

Joe Buscaglia of WGR radio in Buffalo reports that Johnson asked for a contract worth $7.5 million per year during negotiations with the team.  Per Buscaglia, the Bills have made no offers during the past month.

In September, Buscaglia reported that the two sides were more than $2 million apart annually.

If the Bills and Johnson can’t work out a contract by late February, the Bills will have to decide whether to use the franchise tag to limit his mobility.  But since that would entail giving Johnson a one-year, guaranteed salary of roughly $9.5 million, the Bills likely are reluctant to make that kind of a commitment, given their apparent reluctance to pay him $7.5 million per year on a long-term deal.

Agent C.J. Laboy commented on the situation with Sal Capaccio of WGR.  “We were approached to do a deal prior to the season starting,” Laboy said.  “When it became clear that the two sides were too far apart, we agreed that it would be best to shelve negotiations and allow Stevie to focus on the season.  Stevie never wanted his contract status to be a distraction to him or his teammates.  At that time, the Bills turned their focus on getting [Ryan Fitzpatrick’s] contract done, which they ultimately did.  A week or so after Ryan’s deal was done, the Bills wanted to re-open negotiations, but when it quickly became apparent that we wouldn’t be able to get a deal done, Stevie decided that it was best to wait until the end of the year before talking about his contract again.”

And Laboy seemed to confirm the range of Johnson’s expectations.  “Stevie was more than willing to do a discounted deal with the Bills because of his loyalty to the organization for giving him his chance in the NFL, his loyalty to his teammates, and his love for the city of Buffalo,” Laboy said.  “Any reports of Stevie asking for 10, 9, or even 8 million dollars a year are completely false and misleading.”

Ultimately, Johnson may have to test the market in order to determine whether someone else will offer more than what the Bills have offered, and whether Johnson is willing to leave Buffalo.

Through 15 games, Johnson has 964 yard receiving, 109 yards short of his career high in 2010.  He also has 72 catches and six touchdowns; last year, he caught 82 passes and 10 touchdowns.

But untimely drops continue to plague Johnson.  Last year, he had a game-winning score in his hands against the Steelers, but somehow dropped it.  Earlier this season against the Jets, he dropped another pass that could have delivered a win over the Jets.

Still, Johnson possesses the kind of name recognition that could prompt a receiver-needy team to overpay for his services on the first day of free agency, in order to generate offseason excitement and headlines — and to sell tickets and jerseys.

61 responses to “Report: Stevie Johnson wants $7.5 million per year

  1. Stevie- hope you somehow end up on the chiefs schedule next year. You should have to answer for your cheap block that cost Eric berry the season

  2. a product of having good chemistry with his QB, definitely doesn’t deserve 7.5 mill a year Give him another QB like and tell me what his numbers are? nothing unless Fitzpatrick is throwing! The difference between someone like stevie and larry fitz is that larry doesn’t need a qb he plays above the defense. stevie has speed and timing because of his QB’s work ethic they have built good chemistry. hes not a 7.5 million a year player.

  3. All that money the Bills paid Fitzpatrick they might should keep weapons around him. But I think Johnson’s as good as gone

  4. @vols84

    I completely agree with you.
    ————————————————–

    Stevie Johnson isn’t that good. He had a decent season a couple years back and an average one this year.

    Dwayne Bowe is an Elite receiver.
    Steve Johnson is a Dime a dozen receiver.

  5. .
    Franchise Building 101

    Once you’ve locked up a receiver that can’t catch, you move to sign a quarterback who can’t throw, several lineman who can neither block nor tackle, a few DB’s who can’t cover and a running back that can’t run.

    .

  6. In order to get 7.5M, a lot of the other WR will have to re-sign with their own teams. I think Welker, Wayne, Vjax, DJax, Lloyd are all FAs.

    Then on the 2nd tier you have guys like Manningham and Meacham. I would think Meacham could get maybe 5M a year, since that’s what younger guys like Jordy Nelson and Steve Breaston have got recently, both guys put up good numbers as 2nd/3rd options in their offenses.

    7.5M is probably a good starting place to negotiate, but would think he will have to settle in the 6M to 6.5M range.

  7. joetoronto says: Dec 29, 2011 7:32 PM

    7.5 million, I’ll drop passes for a hell of allot less.
    __________________________________
    I see some things never change…still running that mouth Joe. Too bad Stevie is better than any Raider WR you guys have. Also nice prediction on Carson Palmer becoming the next Jim Plunkett. Stick to your Raider posts. You do know that you are bashed more than anyone on here right? It’s because you are always running your mouth on other fans sites. Stick to what you know best…………which is nothing.

  8. I think he should get paid. If the top WRs are making 10-11 mil a year, then Stevie’s 7.5 mil per year sound very reasonable. And to you bills fans that said Jason Peters was overrated and he wasnt a quality football player, he’s going to his 3rd straight Pro-Bowl as an Eagle and is considered the best LT in the game by some analysts. Its one thing when Cris Colinsworth says it, but when Mike Mayock says it, it actually means something.

  9. beastofeden says:
    Dec 29, 2011 7:58 PM

    Dwayne Bowe is an Elite receiver.

    —————————————–

    Oh my goodness. Better stick w/the day job.
    I haven’t seen a ton of SJ but I have of DBowe and he is a drop-MO-chine. For every circus catch Bowe makes, he’ll drop 10 routine balls.

  10. Sure I’d give it to him he has become the go to guy in Buffalo. But there has to be a dropped ball penalty. Each drop is $10,000 or if he reaches 10 he has to give money back to the Bills. You want to get paid for performance, you need to perform.

  11. DBowe leads the AFC in drops. Rice got 8.2 last year. Johnson has put up numbers despite Fitz and Edwards throwing ducks. Seems to be a fair price.

  12. Why pay a player who is a top 15 WR a 7+ mil salary, that is unable to demonstrate professionalism and do his job during the most critical times?

    Is Stevie in the below discussion?

    D Jackson
    Harvin
    Boldin
    Wallace
    S Smith
    Fitz
    A Johnson
    C Johnson
    Austin
    Jennings
    Nelson
    V Jackson

  13. “Still, Johnson possesses the kind of name recognition that could prompt a receiver-needy team to overpay for his services on the first day of free agency, in order to generate offseason excitement and headlines — and to sell tickets and jerseys.”

    Redskins

  14. The Bills will do what they do best – blow it. They will either overpay him to keep him like they did Fitzpatrick because they don’t have a better option or let him hit the open market where someone will pay him. A no-win scenario for Buffalo since he is their #1 receiver but in reality a better #2.

  15. Stevie did not injure Berry. That fool was hurt before Stevie ever hit him. Go back to the replay narrowheads.

  16. Why pay a player who is a top 15 WR a 7+ mil salary, that is unable to demonstrate professionalism and do his job during the most critical times?

    Is Stevie in the below discussion?

    D Jackson
    Harvin
    Boldin
    Wallace
    S Smith
    Fitz
    A Johnson
    C Johnson
    Austin
    Jennings
    Nelson
    V Jackson

    His numbers say he is probably some where in the middle of that group.

  17. cjspiller12 says:
    Dec 29, 2011 8:17 PM
    joetoronto says: Dec 29, 2011 7:32 PM

    7.5 million, I’ll drop passes for a hell of allot less.
    __________________________________
    I see some things never change…still running that mouth Joe. Too bad Stevie is better than any Raider WR you guys have. Also nice prediction on Carson Palmer becoming the next Jim Plunkett. Stick to your Raider posts. You do know that you are bashed more than anyone on here right? It’s because you are always running your mouth on other fans sites. Stick to what you know best…………which is nothing.

    ============

    We know Jacoby Ford is better than CJ Spiller, though, right?

  18. bdb808757 says:
    Dec 29, 2011 9:19 PM
    Why pay a player who is a top 15 WR a 7+ mil salary, that is unable to demonstrate professionalism and do his job during the most critical times?

    Is Stevie in the below discussion?

    D Jackson
    Harvin
    Boldin
    Wallace
    S Smith
    Fitz
    A Johnson
    C Johnson
    Austin
    Jennings
    Nelson
    V Jackson

    Where is Welker is this group???? The top WR of this season in receving yards and receptions?

  19. The dummies in MN love these diva WRs and will gladly drop their pants to have this egomaniac pass dropper come an drop a couple game winners a year for them.

  20. 7.5 seems quite reasonable. Considering what Holmes got and he sucks. Johnson if he gets to a 1000 yards will have as many thousand yard seasons as Holmes does in his whole career.

    To me it’s funny they sign the average qb to a big deal but don’t sign the wr who brings said qb up to average for what seems to be a discount for a number 1 ( say what you want but Johnson has produced well as a number 1 and against good corners as well)

    But it is buffalo so like when they traded the best tackle in football at. Age 26 for a low first round pick when what they needed most was oline and I think they drafted a wr with that pick who now works selling hotdogs in the stands.

    I really feel bad for some of these always losing fans. I mean it sucks my birds can’t seem to win the big one but atleast they could almost every year. This bills group will never win. Much like the bengals ( I know they could make the playoffs this year and they do have a lot of young talent but seriously even bengals fans know the owner will screw it up).

  21. I listen to stevie every Monday on the radio…that kid is going to the.highest bidder…hes too smart to say otherwise..but when you really listen to him you can tell 4 years in buffalo is.enough..
    Remember you heard it.from me first! !!

  22. 18th in receiving yards, 16th in receptions and 24th in receiving TDs.

    His stats look ok on their own, but this was a pass crazy season so he’s not really doing that compared to the to tier of receivers. The Bills probably don’t have a better option coming their way so I expect they’ll sign him.

  23. While the Skins need a true #1 WR—this is a joke…Guy is NOT a TOP Tier talent. At most a #2 against top CBs….Revis, Samuel, that raider dude who is now an Eagle and overpaid, Peterson etc….True #2

  24. if they go for $7.5mill on sj, it should be chocked full of incentives. performance based incentives. pay the man, but make him earn it.
    the bills have a chance this offseason to seriously improve their team. the healthy bills got off to an incredible start, the losses are DIRECTLY correlated with the IR list as it grew. no other NFL team had more starters go to IR, except the jags. a great opportunity for them to build around fitz. now they have picked a qb for the first time since Jim Kelly, it’ll be interesting to see where the new era ends up.

  25. wwwmattcom: he absolutely injured berry with an illegal block. It was talked about on all of the shows that week. Berry tried to play another play and couldn’t. It goes back to their games between Tennessee and Kentucky.

  26. Jordy Nelson is getting $3.5 million from the Packers – anyone think Stevie Johnson is worth more than that?

  27. I’m not saying he’s worth it, but I guarantee you that someone will give him a contract in that range.

    That’s what free agency is all about. It gives players some leverage whether they deserve it or not.

    The fact that the franchise number, which is the average of the top 5 players at the position is $2 million more than Johnson is asking for should be a warning sign for the Bills.

    Given that number, 37.5m for 5 years isn’t going to sound like to much for some team desperate for weapons.

  28. dukemarc says:
    Dec 30, 2011 9:43 AM
    Jordy Nelson is getting $3.5 million from the Packers – anyone think Stevie Johnson is worth more than that?
    ======================

    Anyone think Jordy Nelson will take $3.5 per year in his next contract?

    Anyone think Stevie Johnson’s numbers wouldn’t look alot better with the greatest QB on the planet throwing to him?

  29. 7.5 seems quite reasonable. Considering what Holmes got and he sucks. Johnson if he gets to a 1000 yards will have as many thousand yard seasons as Holmes does in his whole career.

    To me it’s funny they sign the average qb to a big deal but don’t sign the wr who brings said qb up to average for what seems to be a discount for a number 1 ( say what you want but Johnson has produced well as a number 1 and against good corners as well)

    But it is buffalo so like when they traded the best tackle in football at. Age 26 for a low first round pick when what they needed most was oline and I think they drafted a wr with that pick who now works selling hotdogs in the stands.

    I really feel bad for some of these always losing fans. I mean it sucks my birds can’t seem to win the big one but atleast they could almost every year. This bills group will never win. Much like the bengals ( I know they could make the playoffs this year and they do have a lot of young talent but seriously even bengals fans know the owner will screw it up).

    =========================
    Eric Wood who if he can ever stay healthy is fair compensation for Peters.

    Jordy Nelson has the best player in the NFL throwing him the ball. Also the Packers have at least three other WR who are better than any WR on the Bills roster.

    I doubt the Bills void Fitzpatricks deal. If they let Johnson walk they’ve got maybe one other WR on the roster who can play in Nelson.

  30. @ vols84
    Oh it was talked about on TV? Must have been true then….
    Berry did get hurt, Berry did get hit by Stevie, Berry did try to play again, but no Stevie didn’t cause the injury. Having the knowledge of what causes an ACL/MCL/Meniscus injury, how Stevie hit Berry could not have caused the injury. Later Berry is shown trying to juke and move and much like Welkers injury, it was a non contact injury. Which is common. When the knee buckles in towards the midline of the body that’s how you can sprain the MCL and since the MCL and Meniscus are attached you can get all three. Keep watching the replay and stop watching TV shows.

  31. It was a dirty block. Opinions vary. I can throw some links out there that say it injured him. Either way, hope Stevie plays the chiefs next year.

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