Chris Johnson to retire as a Tennessee Titan


CJ2K is tossing up the deuces.

Running back Chris Johnson is set to sign a one-day contract to retire from the NFL as a Tennessee Titan on Wednesday in Nashville, Jim Wyatt of the team's official website reported.

The speedster, who was once clocked at 4.24 at the NFL Scouting Combine in 2008, insists he could still blaze if he wanted.

"I feel like if I trained the right way, I'd still be in the 4.2s," Johnson told Wyatt.

"I know for sure I'd get 1,000 yards if I laced them up," Johnson added, smiling. "Shoot, that's not even a question. You put me in an offense where I'm the starting back, there's no way I wouldn't get 1,000 yards. I could still do it, but it's time to move on to the next situation."

Johnson spent his first six seasons in a Titans uniform after becoming a first-round pick in 2008. The running back blasted out of the gate, earning 1,228 rushing yards and nine touchdowns on 251 attempts in his rookie campaign.

Johnson one-upped himself with one of the greatest seasons in NFL history in his second year. The running back earned the nickname CJ2K with a 2,006-yard season to go along with 14 rushing scores. Johnson is one of only seven players to ever rush for 2,000-plus yards in a single season.

With speed to get to the edge against any defense and blast past defensive back's angles, Johnson was a field-tilting weapon out of the Titans' backfield during his six-year run with the franchise. A fierce runner who could hit the gap and fly, Johnson went over the 1,000-yard mark in each of his six seasons in Tennessee.

Outside of Nashville, it all tumbled downhill for CJ2K.

Signing with New York in 2014, Johnson earned just 663 yards in his only season with the Jets. Fighting Father Time while losing a step from his world-class speed, a propensity to avoid contact and try to make every run a big play hurt Johnson's production and standing in league circles.

After getting let go by the Jets, Johnson found another chance in Arizona. In Bruce Arians' system, CJ2K looked like a closer version of his early-career self. The back was a top-three rusher for the first half of the 2015 campaign, including four 100-plus yard outings. A fractured tibia in Week 12, however, ended his season prematurely with 814 rushing yards.

Johnson spent two more years in Arizona, but injuries and inefficiency reigned. He played just eight games over those two campaigns, combining for 209 total rushing yards.

Johnson was out of the league in 2018.

"I know for sure I could still play," Johnson told Wyatt. "Before I (announced my retirement), having talks with my agent about what we were going to do, I thought if I played one more year the only team I would come back and play for was Tennessee. I would love to have finished where I started. We had some discussions with the team, and they weren't looking to go in that direction. There were no hard feelings, and it didn't work out, so I decided to retire."

Now, the man best known for his grand-slam runs in Tennessee will retire a Titans. As it should be.