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Is David Johnson due for an extension with Cardinals?

Arizona Cardinals running back David Johnson created a stir in recent days.

Johnson missed on-field work and observed from the sidelines the past week during organized team activities.

Cardinals coach Steve Wilks declined to go into particulars on what kept the running back from the practice field, but NFL Network's Mike Garafolo and Tom Pelissero reported the star running back is not injured.

While a healthy Johnson provides good news, there could be another looming issue when considering Johnson enters the final year of his contract and will earn a base salary of $1.88 million in 2018.

"I don't see any way he plays just for that," Garafolo said on *NFL Up To The Minute*. "I truly believe that the Cardinals and David Johnson at some point will negotiate a contract extension before the season.

"You're talking about a guy who believes that he can go 1,000 yards receiving, 1,000 yards rushing; ain't a shot he's going to play for $1.9 million. I do know that he and his camp have started to think about, 'What's our number? What do we want to get to?' And the Cardinals, frankly, know that if a guy winds up putting up 1,000-1,000, and then he's slated for free agency, now you're talking that franchise tag game. So, there is incentive for them to do the deal ahead of the season as well."

Johnson is regarded as one of the NFL's top offensive weapons when fully healthy. In 2016, he produced 1,239 yards rushing and 16 touchdowns on 293 carries, adding 879 yards receiving and four touchdowns on 80 catches.

Any desire to secure Johnson for the future makes sense. But it would be wise for the Cardinals to remember Johnson comes off a 2017 campaign where he played in one game before landing on injured reserve with a wrist injury.

Nevertheless, the Cardinals certainly know what they have in Johnson and the reward outweighs the risk.

The Cardinals currently have $13.9 million in available salary cap space.

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