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Derrick Johnson: Jon Gruden was 'big factor' in signing

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Derrick Johnson said he had offers from "three or four teams" to join their squads this offseason, but he picked the Raiders over them all mainly for one big reason: Chucky.

"He's a big factor," Oakland's newest linebacker said of coach Jon Gruden during an interview on NFL Up to the Minute on Wednesday. "He's a very inspiring man. He's a guy who can get the players to play at a high level. He's a proven winner. He's a guy who has a lot of respect in this league and I have a lot of respect for him, and definitely, definitely a big reason why I ventured this way."

After spending the entirety of his 13-year career knowing Oakland as a rival when he was with the Kansas City Chiefs, Johnson agreed to a deal with the Raiders just hours after visiting them late last week.

It was on that trip, where he met with Gruden and found out the coach's plans for him, that he learned it'd be an easy choice to put pen to Silver and Black paper.

"The biggest thing was the Raiders had more of a plan for me," Johnson said. "At this age, when you have a plan for a guy that's 35 years old, that's an opportunity you have to look into more. Meeting the coaching staff, meeting everybody here at the organization -- I've always had respect for the Raiders even though I wanted to tear their heads off playing for K.C. -- but just having the upmost respect for them, great organization, glad to be here."

In getting an experienced vet who's logged more than 1,100 tackles and knows the AFC West landscape, we're sure the feeling is mutual from Gruden.

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