Still no indication that the Texans would trade Andre Johnson

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As Texans receiver Andre Johnson continues to be sufficiently unhappy with the team to not show up for offseason workouts, the Texans continue to show no inclination to give him what he wants — a new home.

But Johnson remains dug in.  With potential fines for skipping mandatory minicamp at only $70,000, it’s a no-brainer he won’t be there; Johnson already has blown a $1 million roster bonus by not attending offseason workouts.

The stakes will get a lot higher come training camp, when Johnson faces fines in the amount of $30,000 along with partial forfeiture of bonus money previously paid.  And if he ultimately doesn’t play in 2014, Johnson will pass on a base salary of $10 million.

Unless the Texans decide to trade Johnson, the options become play for Houston or play for no one, retiring from the game (with the option of unretiring a la Carson Palmer if/when he’s finally traded).

While Johnson doesn’t have much leverage, retirement can be a powerful tool.  If he convinces the Texans he’ll truly not play if his only option is to play for the Texans, the Texans would be wise to get what they can and move on.

There’s chatter regarding teams potentially clearing cap space to absorb the Johnson contract, and other teams definitely would be interested in the soon-to-be 33-year-old receiver, if he were available.

For now, he’s not.  If he keeps not showing up for the Texans he eventually may be, even though they’ve done absolutely nothing to prepare for life without him.

The fact that the Texans didn’t make a post-Andre plan suggests that they badly misread the situation, which first emerged last November when he said “I’m under contract so I have to play my contract out” after getting into a little bit of a verbal squabble with Matt Schaub and leaving the field before the team’s then-latest loss.  The team surely assumed that, even if he huffs and puffs, Johnson wouldn’t walk away from $10 million in 2014.

At least for now, he’s doing a very good job of creating the impression that he will.

57 responses to “Still no indication that the Texans would trade Andre Johnson

  1. Exactly…

    Andre said (not the team, not his agent, he wasn’t FORCED to say this)…

    “I’m under contract so I have to play my contract out”.

    I guess he didn’t understand what the words HE CHOSE to say actually meant…

  2. If Belichick got Andre Johnson, New England becomes a near certainty to win the Super Bowl. The window on Brady is closing. Maybe the Patriots should go all in. Johnson would possibly play for a little less for the prospect of playing with Tom Brady. He’s probably a little better than the stud Texan troika of Case Keenam, TJ Yates and Ryan Fitzpatrick.
    Make it happen, Bill.

  3. He’s done all he can for that franchise since he was first drafted. I think he’s paid his dues and if he wants to walk to another team, he should be given that option.

  4. .

    With Obrien being a new NFL coach he cannot afford to let Johnson become a distraction. It would be in his best interest to move on from him even if it requires a cap hit.

    .

  5. Perfect example of poor management decisions by McNair, et al. Never had a clue and never will. Pay him and get a back up ready.

  6. If the cap hit this season isn’t too astronomical (too lazy to google it) just trade him during training camp. As much as I wanted to see him retire a Texan, this is at least the third time in his career he’s sulked about being a Texan. I’ll never forget being at the end of season party at Reliant Stadium in 2005 and Dre taking the podium. He said he was glad the Texans drafted him, but it all seemed so fake. Ship him home to Miami. Anywhere but Baltimore, Indy, Tennessee, or Dallas. Let’s go ahead and add Seattle on there, that fan base has become quite annoying.

  7. Bill O’Brien is a good coach, but a terrible calculator. Lost out on the QUEEN’S gamble/trade he wanted, then pissed off the best player on the team. People person he isn’t.

  8. He has been paid handsomely to play for them. He’s been given new contracts when there was no justification other than to keep him happy. He’s been treated better there than he would’ve been just about anywhere else considering the stinks he’s raised about his contracts. He resigned knowing Schaub was the QB. Then he gets into a spat with Schaub, they get rid of Schaub, & now he wants out because the QB isn’t good enough. Did he expect them to somehow trade for Brady or manning? Dude, get real. If I were them I’d trade him to the highest bidder whoever it is. But just to see him get what he deserves I hope they call his bluff.

  9. The Texans don’t take a huge cap hit if they trade him. Yes they would have 11 mil in dead money(all teams carry some dead money), but they would save 32 mil they have to pay in salary the next 3 yrs, including saving 4 mil on the cap this yr. They could use that money to pay Watts or some other young player. They’re prob 2-3 yrs from competing for a SBowl anyway, and by that time Johnson will be too old. A trade makes sense on a lot of levels. Belichick and O’Brien are friends. The Pats have almost 8 mil under the cap and could make more room by extending guys like McCourty and Gostkowski or cutting guys like Connelly or Wendell, who are replacable. They probably could get AJ to take a little less money if he really wants to win, he’s already made a ton. A 2nd rnd pick should get it done. Or Mallett(if they still want him) and a pick. Might make them SB favorites.

  10. What would it hurt to take a look at Vince Young….. Don’t let this guy retire without bringing him in for a tryout….
    (NFL Rookie of the Year, 2 Pro Bowls, Playoff experience and Mobility). Vince has a career winning record of 31-19…
    He can help this team…even if it’s only to upgrade the team’s quarterback pool…

  11. I’d give Mallet & a second for Andre so he could be Brady’s guy for 3-4 more years

  12. The cap hit for trading him is 11 mil. (not dead money, but direct cap hit) and the Texans have about 12 mil. in cap space. Don’t think he’s going anywhere.

  13. as the prime target in Kubiaks offense he produced catches but few TD’s he would have to play another 20 yrs to come close to Terrell Owens and Randy Moss… Over rated!!!!!

  14. One more time. AJohnsons cap hit this yr is about 15.5 mil if they keep him. If they cut or trade him, The hit is close to 12 mil, which they can spread over 2 yrs after 6/1. Therefore, while carrying about 12 mil in dead money, they actually save 10 mil on the cap this yr. An example is LWoodley. He was a 13.6 mil cap hit for the Steelers this yr. When they cut him, they had to carry 6mil in bonus money as dead money, but actually freed up 8 mil(his base salary) against the cap.

  15. The Texans need to do something before they have a Barry Sanders scenario when a top player gets so tired of losing he simply retires rather than face another rebuild.

  16. If Johnson wanted to be able to walk after 3 years of a 7 year deal, he should have included voidable years in the deal.

    When you get paid a signing bonus as an appeasement and then a year later you start moaning about the quality of the team you’re playing for, then I don’t have much sympathy.

    If he were to come out and say “I’ll refund the $8.3 million in signing bonuses I have received in order incentivize the Texans to trade me or let me out of my contract” then I might feel differently.

    Right now, this is a guy trying to have his cake and eat it too!

  17. I think you’re a little late with that one RAINSARGE. It’s a full rebuild on offense. Foster should be next. And the O Line isn’t all that good either.

  18. The guy is 33, unhappy, and the Texans aren’t exactly SB contenders, so why not try and get something in return for the future?

  19. For anyone to say Andre Johnson makes any team a Super Bowl WINNER is just non sense. You obviously no nothing pal

  20. Do the Lions have the space to him on? Maybe with the right deal, the Texans could split some of the cap hit.

    Can you imagine Johnson & Johnson, along with the new kids, to throw to????

  21. Randy moss zero rings with the pats! Wes welker zero rings with the pats….. But man if they sign dre Johnson at the age of 33-34 they’re gonna win lol!

  22. Tom Brady doesn’t need elite wr to win Super Bowls he did it with Deion branch, Troy brown and David givens… He’s got more talented wr right now than those three

  23. I don’t think the new admin there in Houston will put up with his staying away. Andre: you will never get out of Houston if you don’t have a better attitude. The Texans will go all Barry Sanders on you if you’d don’t shape up. Your career will be over. Show up and maybe just maybe they’ll cut you or trade you.

  24. The cap hit they would take by trading him is completely irrelevant. They don’t need the space because they’re not two or three key signings away from getting in the playoffs this year or next.

  25. Sending him to the Carolina Panthers on the opposite side of Kelvin Benjamine would make a lot of sense for that team and it would give the NFC South the most formidable groups of receiving corps in the entire league. This addition would give Cam Newton a legitimate shot to compete with the aerial attacks of Tampa Bay, Atlanta, and New Orleans. I say this as a Atlanta Falcons fan and want to see exciting/competitive games this season…

  26. I’ve been a fan of Andre since his Canes’ days. Was praying the Texans drafted him instead of that Rogers kid from M.State..has handled himself with class and professionalism his whole career…until now. Andre is looking like a major crybaby. Trade him before he tarnishes what most Texan fans believed he stood for.

  27. I don’t think Mr Johnson’s motivation is money. I think he wants “The Ring” which isn’t going to happen with the Texans with the sort time he has left.

  28. Andre is under contract and can only play if hes on the Texans roster. CBA didn’t bargin to get really good guys a do over. Play dude. or sit for two years.

  29. damcmp says:
    Jun 15, 2014 11:38 AM
    as the prime target in Kubiaks offense he produced catches but few TD’s he would have to play another 20 yrs to come close to Terrell Owens and Randy Moss… Over rated!!!!!

    2 24
    Report comment

    ++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++++
    Moss has 156 TD catches

    Terrell has 153 TD catches

    Andre, in 11 seasons has 61 TD catches.

    Andre has averaged 5.45 TD catches a season in his 11 yrs.

    At that rate (5.45 a yr going forward, even though he’ll slow down as he ages), he need 16.7 more yrs to catch Terrell’s total in addition to the 11 yrs he’s already played. So, he’d need to play a grand total of 27.7 yrs in the league to equal Terrell’s TD haul.

    Since Randy has 3 more TD’s than Terrell, it bumps up a bit more.

    Basically, Andre would need to play 17 more seasons to catch Randy, or play a grad total of 28 yrs in the league…

  30. It’s a shame that the greatest receiver currently in the league is stuck on a consistently losing team.

  31. I’ll cut him some slack. He finally thought he was on a contender rolling along through the thin times,next thing he knows 2-14,and Ryan Fitzpatrick under center. He wants a ring or at least to taste the Super Bowl. Why not give him a shot.

  32. Did Johnson ask for a trade when nobody was looking, or are you just making up the news? Maybe he just doesn’t want to go through camp. For those questioning his skills, this guy put up 1400+ yards last season on a terrible team with terrible quarterback play. Two more years like that and he passes Moss, three more and he passes Johnson, both in a year’s less time than they took, and with infinitely more class.

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