In prime time, against a team with weapons galore, the New York Jets benched their $72 million cornerback.
"That was just our decision," coach Adam Gase said, via the New York Daily News. "We just decided not to play him."
Johnson finally entered with 3:27 left in the blowout only when Hairston got hurt.
After signing Johnson last offseason to a five-year, $72.5 million contract, the corner had a horrific first year in New York. There was hope that defensive coordinator Gregg Williams could revive his play entering 2019. Instead, the team benched him after one week of poor play.
"I was going with the 1s (starters) back and forth all week in practice," Johnson said. "Didn't play. I was just there to support my teammates."
Johnson said he wouldn't ask for a trade -- not that the Jets could get bupkis back in a swap given his play and the massive money he's still owed. Johnson is under contract through 2022. Per Over The Cap, Johnson has an $11 million injury guarantee next year that becomes a full guarantee if on the roster on the third day of the new league year. He'd count $12 million in dead money on the Jets' cap if cut or traded and $15 million on the cap to keep him next year.
"I'll have to talk to my DB coach and go from there," Johnson said about how to proceed. "I want to be here with my teammates. ... Of course, I'm upset, But again, It's not about me."
The benching is just the latest effort from the new Jets brass to distance itself from Mike Maccagnan's moves. If the losses mount in New York, there could be plenty more changes coming besides Johnson's benching.