Should The Houston Texans Keep Andre Johnson?


The future Hall-of-Fame wide receiver has had an up and down season since the switch from Gary Kubiak to Bill O’Brien – and not just on the field. According to several reports, Andre Johnson made it clear he wanted out of Houston this past offseason, asking to be traded to a team who could fulfill his Super Bowl aspirations.

Just a few weeks ago, Johnson seemed to have a change of heart and told reporters he wants to remain a Texan. He explained how he “can’t imagine how it would feel to put on someone else’s uniform,” – quite the change from asking to be traded.

With a critical offseason looming, Johnson is one of several players who will need to be evaluated to see if they are worth being kept around. Let’s take a look at both sides of the argument on Dre’s future with the Texans:

A Case For:

Andre Johnson still has some football in him, and you’re crazy if you think otherwise. He made it apparent with 10 receptions and 134 yards along with a touchdown in the final week against the Jags. Although he may not be a number one option anymore, he is without a doubt a solid number two. No matter what team he’s on, he can make them better.

Plus, Johnson may be the best option next year to be paired with Hopkins. Whether they release him or not, the Texans need to draft a receiver high in the upcoming draft. Even if they do, that player may not be ready to come in and contribute like Johnson can (although this past wide receiver draft class would say otherwise). Keeping Johnson around would guarantee another weapon for next year’s quarterback.

A Case Against:

It always comes back to the money. According to Over The Cap, if the Texans cut Johnson before June 1st, they would save around $8.8 million in cap space. If the Texans waited to cut Johnson after June 1st, they would save $11.5 million. Either way, that’s a lot of money.

And money isn’t the only thing working against Dre. This past season, Johnson had 3 lost fumbles. Before this season, he had 3 lost fumbles his entire career. Only Jarvis Landry had more lost fumbles this past season (4). However, the difference between the two is that Landry is a rookie and Johnson is a 12-year veteran. It doesn’t take an expert to see that Johnson is declining, but when you add the alarming amount of turnovers to the equation, it may be difficult to look past.

The Verdict:

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It really is a tough call. I want to see Johnson finish off his career as a Texan. Very few players can say they spent their entire career with the same team. He has put up all-time numbers with guys like Ryan Fitzpatrick, Matt Schaub, and David Carr throwing him the ball, an accomplishment that is truly remarkable.

Still, he is owed way too much money. If the Texans can work something out and get him to take a big pay cut, I’d love to see him return. But if he’s the difference in signing a big name in free agency, it may be time for the two parties to shake hands and part ways.