Two days after Miami Dolphins wide receiver Chad Johnson was arrested for misdemeanor domestic violence, the team officially gave him his pink slip.
The troubled 34 year old will likely have great difficulty in finding a new team due to several factors, not the least of which is that his wife intends to press charges.
Johnson, who had 15 catches with the New England Patriots last season, was released by them and picked up by the receiver-poor Miami Dolphins in an attempt to shore up the position somewhat. Neither of last year’s starting WRs have been present. Brandon Marshall was traded to Chicago in order to head off exactly the sort of thing Chad Johnson wound up bringing – massive off-the-field distraction and negative publicity.
Brian Hartline has yet to play any due to a calf injury and will probably miss the next preseason game against the Panthers, so Chad’s absence from the team leaves them with Legedu Naanee at one outside position, experienced and crafty but physically limited veteran slot receiver Davone Bess, and little else.
With project TE Zac Efron’s blocking struggles, Miami Head Coach Joe Philbin might entertain moving him to wideout, where he’d have a size and weight advantage against corners while having 4.4 speed. Interesting idea, but we’ll have to wait and see if that’s in the cards.
In the end, Chad Johnson may very well have another chance to make a roster somewhere, but probably not until after the season starts and injuries begin to hit. In any case, the legal part is going to have to play out before anyone will probably take a chance on him.
Statistically, Johnson has had a nice career and was one of the league’s most dangerous threats starting in 2001 until just a few years ago. He’s had 6 consecutive 1,000-yard receiving seasons from ’02-07 and one more in ’09 – all with the Cincinnati Bengals.
He’s had 766 receptions for 11,059 yards for a very respectable 14.4 yds/rec average and 67 TDs over his career.