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Andre Johnson frustrated with treatment of NFL vets

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Andre Johnson wasn't expected to go quietly out of Houston.

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Then again, few would blame him.

In an interview with ESPN on Monday, the Texans legend spotlighted what he feels is a growing problem among industry veterans, and something that bothered him especially on his way out of Houston.

"The funny thing is, when a player asks to be traded or something, people get on you about honoring your contract," Johnson said. "But when you've done a lot for an organization and they feel like you get old, then they don't have to honor their contract.

"I don't get where they come up with this honoring your contract when you're very, very productive and you are doing great things for them...I don't know a lot of guys in the league that catch 85 balls and have almost 1,000 yards and that's a down year for them. But you have a year like that and then it's 'well, you're old, we want to reduce your role,' and all this stuff -- I don't get that."

It's difficult to blame Johnson for having these feelings -- he goes on to say he harbors no ill will toward the Texans -- and this time of year is especially wrenching.

For a budding franchise like the Texans, Johnson was really their first marquee player, a dominant and incredibly consistent force for so long. All that while, he had very little backing. We saw a similar situation with Larry Fitzgerald this past season where an icon is squeezed into fitting a pay grade that can help the business forward.

File this away as reason No. 5,460 on why we wish these players could enjoy the stability that baseball contracts provide.

Perhaps then, modern franchise icons like Johnson could get the sendoff they deserve.

The latest Around The NFL Podcast breaks down the Brandon Marshall trade and plays another game of "Go Get My Lunch." Find more Around The NFL content on NFL NOW.

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