NEW YORK (CBSNewYork) — The Jets are heading in a new direction, with a new front office and sideline hierarchy. But that doesn’t mean the decisions of the previous regime will be so easily forgotten.
Chris Johnson is bitter and if things actually shook out as he claims, his saltiness would be understandable. Formally released last week, the veteran running back says prior to signing with the Jets, they misrepresented how much playing time he would get, alongside incumbent Chris Ivory.
“When I sat down and talked to Rex (Ryan) before I signed with the Jets, my role and my situation was explained to me totally different to what actually happened,” Johnson recently said on the Rich Eisen Show.
Johnson, who had rushed for at least 1,000 yards in each of his previous six NFL season, said he was under the impression he would get the majority of the snaps.
“Basically it was a situation where I was going there to be the guy or whatever,” Johnson said. “It was still said, yeah both guys (Johnson and Ivory) was going to get playing time, but I think it was like after the second game or something like that, it just switched over and I started getting less and less playing time.”
As a result, Johnson finished with a career-low 155 carries and 663 yards, but a respectable 4.3-yard-per-carry average. The 29-year-old running back had more than 10 carries in just six games.
There are some who will say Johnson is just bitter because the Jets chose not to pick up his option, but former Jets tight end Kellen Winslow Jr. went Twitter on Tuesday and corroborated John’s claim.
The hashtag in Winslow’s tweet mirrored some of what Johnson went on to say:
Rex Ryan was not to blame.
“I think last year, with the organization, I think a lot of the stuff was out of Rex’s hands,” Johnson said, later clarifying that he was, indeed, referring to former general manager John Idzik.
The Jets currently have just two running backs under contract next season, Ivory and Daryl Richardson, so they figure to be big players when free agency opens on March 10.
Though he is old for a running back, Johnson said he’s not concerned about finding his next gig.
“I got a whole lot left in my tank,” he said. “I think I went to a situation where I was told one thing and it was another.”