It has been seven years since Chris Johnson became the sixth player to join the exclusive 2,000-yard rushing club. The veteran running back still harbors grand illusions for his NFL twilight years.
It's not an unreasonable sentiment. Despite starting just nine games, Chris Johnson became first Cardinals running back in 30 years to break the 100-yard rushing mark in four different games. David Johnson set a franchise rookie record with 13 touchdowns and led the NFL in yards from scrimmage once he reached the starting lineup in mid-November through the end of the season.
The freakishly athleticDavid Johnson was so impressive as a power-speed back with smooth receiving ability that his ceiling almost seems unlimited. General manager Steve Keim believes it's "scary" how good Johnson can become. Coach Bruce Arians unflinchingly declared early this offseason that Johnson has a chance to be "one of the all-time best" at his position.
"We'll be great together," David Johnson said. "C.J. continues to help me out in my running, continues to teach some of the tips of the trade of how to run the ball and make it easier for me and the linemen blocking."
Already one of the top half-dozen backs in the league, the younger Johnson figures to be a three-down workhorse this season, with the elder Johnson spelling him and Andre Ellington used as a situational change-up and receiving threat.
Arizona's backfield stacks up well with the NFL's best, which include Pittsburgh's duo of Le'Veon Bell and DeAngelo Williams, Tampa Bay's Doug Martin and Charles Sims, Los Angeles' Todd Gurley and Tre Mason, Cincinnati's Giovani Bernard and Jeremy Hill, Buffalo's LeSean McCoy and Karlos Williams, and the three-headed hydras in Dallas and Kansas City.