Big Lead Sports Bar

11/09/2009

LARRY JOHNSON, PITTSBURGH STEELER?



Could this man be the next member of the Pittsburgh Steelers? If it were up to him...yes. According to ESPN's Adam Schefter, RB Larry Johnson, recently freed of the burdens of an NFL contract, would like to join the Steelers. Let me try and contain my enthusiasm.

Predictably, the internet has gone wild with this nugget of information; but just like the Michael Vick-to-the-Steelers theory, let's slow down a minute before we go signing anyone on behalf of Kevin Colbert and Mike Tomlin. Once again, the Steelers do not need this player. They already have several running backs who are more than capable of handling an NFL workload. And while the Steelers are certainly are not exempt from players who have had run-ins with the law, they have been their own players, not players from other teams who are being given a second chance at NFL life by the Black and Gold. With the exception of the extremely mislabeled Jerome Bettis, images are not generally rehabbed in the Steel City.

Again drawing comparisons to Vick and ignoring the off-field distractions, this is a player who is in a career freefall. After Johnson's ridiculous two-year run of 752 carries, 3539 yards rushing, and 40 total touchdowns in just 25 starts between 2005 and 2006, his numbers have predictably flatlined. He was clearly overused by the Chiefs in that time, and his stats are a direct reflection of the heavy workload. He hasn't played more than 12 games in a season since then, his top yardage total was 874 in 2008, and he's getting just 2.7 yards per carry this season. I don't know about you, but those numbers don't really excite me.

In short, if you really feel that the Steelers need an expensive, overworked, baggage-laden, soon-to-be-30-year-old running back, then by all means, I suggest you support the Larry Johnson-to-Pittsburgh cause. But I'm guessing you won't have much support.

Schefter: Larry Johnson wants to play for the Steelers
[PFT]

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14 comments:

BURGH08 said...

This is off topic, but when the 'Monday Night Countdown' crew asked what Ben needs to do to be among the Quarterback elite, this is what Steve Young said:

'He needs to do it in the pocket'.

To which Matt Millen said "Pocket, Schmoket"

Seriously, of all players to say that, it's STEVE YOUNG? Ben won more Lombardi's playing the position (legitimately) than Young.

Unreal. All hail SEVEN.

Adam said...

Whether we "need" this player and whether we should "want" this player are two totally different things.

I want as many talented football players on my teams as possible. Competition within the team is good, and if a guy like LJ could come in here and push Mendenhall and Parker, then we shouldn't have a problem with it.


And this isn't quite the same as the Vick situation. We don't have a Ben Roethlisberger at running back. We have an inconsistent young player and a veteran who's biggest asset, his speed, has deteriorated to the point that he's becoming less and less useful every week.

LJ isn't going to come in and be a stud like he used to, but he could still help the Steelers. If he can be had for the right price, the Steelers should add him.

BURGH08 said...

LJ is a cancer. It's just that simple.

Bill said...

The guys a piece of garbage and besides our running backs have enough internal competition to keep them motivated. Not to mention we're already up against the cap and his skills have deteriorated more over the years than Parker .....Damn that's a lousy opinion Adam.

Chip said...

I'm still waiting for us to sign TJ Duckett. He's supposed to be our long-lost replacement for Jerome Bettis you know!

BurressWithButterflyWings said...

How did i KNOW Penn State Adam was going to be 100% in support of Larry Johnson coming to the Steelers.


I thought he was a great RB in college and solid as a pro, but i can't shake the image of him on Hard Knocks in the KC airport carrying a guitar case during his hold-out saying he was going to open shop and start playing to see if some of those people wanted to give him some money.

This dude is bad news and with Mendy, Moore and a still healing Parker i think we have plenty of RB depth right now.

NickDawg said...

I would rather sign Penn st adam to running back than this cancer of a human being. For anyone to think he is coming to the steelers obviously doesnt know the steeler way.

HomeRunFromBehindTheMeatballs said...

I love what LJ did on the field at PSU, but he's always been a terrible person & now he's a terrible football player to match! Mendy is coming on, and the discount double M has done nothing but impress & exceed expectations since he arrived here. Has anyone seen FWP? Dispite Willie's disappearance, we still don't need more RBs, especially washed up, girl-beatin a$$clowns like la-rry john-son.

Good point by Bill. With who's money should we sign LJ? Big Snack's? Skippy's? Hartwig's?

Steve said...

LJ will probably be an Eagle soon and like Vick, will be another useless member of that confused team. Let's pray this happens.

Also, who cares what Steve Young thinks? Even in his prime he would survive for about 6 weeks max. as a "pocket" QB for this Steelers team. You can put Brady, Manning and Rivers on that list too. As much as Ben still ticks me off sometimes, he still gets more out of this offense than anyone else currently could.

Adam said...

I'd support the signing of a beat up Shady McCoy too. It's about gathering talent where you can find it on the cheap, and LJ fits that bill.

Duane said...

This guy is a mess and does not seem repentant at all. Beyond that why do the Steelers need him? The light has come on for Mendenhall. He is looking like he could be the back he was projected to be. Johnson, like so many big backs, has hit the wall. He is never going to be what he was on the field and the odds of him continuing to be an idiot off the field are way too high.

BURGH08 said...

Is Curtis Enis still available?

Brian said...

Indeed, if there's anything the Steelers already have too much of, it's runningbacks.

Louis Lipps is my homeboy said...

I'll ignore the fact that he's a total a-hole and bring up this fact:


Right now, in 2009, as a football player, Larry Johnson sucks ass.

I'd rather trot out a broken down Willie Parker or a green Isaac Redman than go and spend more money on this guy.