The Houston Texans have officially released Andre Johnson. With another organization, this might not have been quite as big a deal, but Johnson is the most successful drafted player in Texans history, at least for now until surpassed by J.J. Watt. He was the second first round pick in team history, after David Carr.
A year ago, there were some conflicts with Johnson and the new coaching staff with Bill O’Brien, and some initial rumblings that Johnson might want out. The Texans opted not to trade him, and today, it comes to an official end.
Johnson, who will turn 34 in July, posted his lowest yards-per-game average since 2005. He’ll get a look somewhere else, if he so chooses to keep playing. After suffering through the quarterback play the last two years in Houston, one would think getting to a good situation offensively would be important for the veteran. Here are some possibilities.
Seattle Seahawks: Gets to be the #1 WR on a top team, but where he doesn’t have to carry the load and be the focal point of the defense. If he can make the money work, this should be option #1.
San Diego Chargers: Philip Rivers to Andre Johnson would be nice. Malcom Floyd, who’s the same age as Johnson, is still there. Antonio Gates is even older. It could be the new version of the over-the-hill gang (along with Keenan Allen and Eddie Royal) as the Chargers try to capitalize on Rivers still playing at a high level.
Philadelphia Eagles: They might have a few openings in Philadelphia, with the loss of Jeremy Maclin. Would Andre fit the culture? It’s another offense where he could succeed as a part of the whole, if he is willing to take that role and start alongside Jordan Matthews.
Carolina Panthers: Besides Kelvin Benjamin, there isn’t a whole lot there. Johnson could come in as the veteran #2 receiver and provide a good complement, and get to work with Cam Newton.
Minnesota Vikings: An opportunity to work with the quarterback that Houston could have drafted last year. Cordarrelle Patterson was a massive disappointment a year ago. How much do the Vikings believe in Charles Johnson or Jarius Wright? Andre could come in and provide a veteran option to go with those two and Greg Jennings.