Andre Johnson, star wide receiver of the Houston Texans, seems to have an issue with the organization and the whole football world seems to know it. The all time leading receiver in Houston’s history has reached an age where most elite receiver enter the twilight of their career, and Johnson’s time to win it all is running short. Frustration has seemed to take a turn for the worse after the draft, as Johnson watched his home team pass up all the top quarterback prospects in the draft, choosing to wait until round four to draft Tom Savage. Houston’s quarterback roster currently consists of Ryan Fitzpatrick, Case Keenum, T.J. Yates, and rookie Tom Savage; needless to say that none of the four quarterbacks on the Texans roster have a playoff victory. The lack of urgency has appeared to peeve Johnson to no end, leaving the veteran wide receiver little choice to reconsider his options moving forward in the league. Mixed reports have come out in recent days of what he may do. Some rumors have stated that Houston and Johnson will work it out like they have before, and he will make his return back to camp on time. Others have Johnson requesting a trade from the Texans, allowing him a new start on a hopeful contender.
There a few teams that make a tremendous amount of sense for the All-Pro wide receiver. The New England Patriots make the most sense when talking trades with Houston. The familiarity between the two teams have become increasingly high just in the past year. Houston hired Bill O’Brien as their new head coach, who used to be the Patriots offensive coordinator not long ago. O’Brien hired defensive coordinator, Romeo Crennel, who has extensive experience with Bill O’Brien, coaching on the New England staff. Just recently the Texans and the Patriots were reportedly having trade talks involving Patriots quarterback, Ryan Mallet. The tall, big armed quarterback has been on Houston’s radar for the past month, and adding someone like Andre Johnson to the trade talk may help move things along. Houston needs quarterback help, Patriots need a go-to wide receiver for Tom Brady. Andre Johnson would provide an instant impact player for the Patriots offense; while Ryan Mallet may have the potential to be Houston’s premier signal caller for years to come.
The Cleveland Browns, Carolina Panthers, and the San Francisco 49ers may also look into the services of Andre Johnson. The Browns failed to address the receiver position for newly drafted quarterback, Johnny Manziel, through the draft and could use a threat outside dearly with a possible suspension coming for Josh Gordon. Carolina is another interesting spot with an established quarterback already in place with Cam Newton. The Panthers picked up two wide receivers in the draft but only Kelvin Benjamin is expected to have an immediate impact on the offense. Pair up Benjamin with Andre Johnson and some special things may happen after all in North Carolina. One dark horse who seems to always express some interest in the wide receiver position are the San Francisco 49ers. Ever since their bust of a pick in wide receiver A.J. Jenkins, they have been continually trying to correct their wide receiver corps since. With Crabtree, Boldin, Lloyd, and Steve Johnson, many would think their wide receiver core would be set. However, Jim Harbaugh and his staff are unpredictable, and they like to roll the dice and stack talent onto their already deep roster.
It is likely that Andre Johnson does not want another rebuild session with a new coaching staff and Houston can clear about $4 million in salary cap if they were able to rid themselves of Johnson. A trade would be the ideal scenario for both, but it would surprise nobody if the Houston great stayed in town. Andre Johnson has always been a staple in the community and a fan favorite for years, so losing someone of his stature in Houston could have some serious backlash from the Texan faithful. Fan rarely want to see any of their all-time favorites leave for good, but in the end, the Texans have to do what is best for Johnson and the organization. In this case, it seems as if walking down opposite directions from one another may be the best course of action.
Commentary by Justin Huffman
Guardian Liberty Voice Writer covering the Houston Texans