Tuesday, August 14, 2012
Eddie George's pass-game hopes for CJ
By Paul Kuharsky
The Titans got Eddie George and Chris Johnson in a room together to talk running and running backs recently, and this segment of Titans All Access is worth watching.
Most striking to me was George's talking about Johnson's potential as a weapon in the passing attack.
Johnson was targeted three times in the preseason opener and didn't catch one. He dropped two of them and looked completely disinterested in working as a receiver.
I talked with CJ early in camp about the idea that he might catch fewer passes this season because the Titans have more weapons. If his approach doesn't change, he might guarantee QBs look elsewhere, because he's not reliable enough.
George believes Johnson can be an incredible two-way threat. This comes at about 12:10 into the video:
"The best thing about CJ is he can alter his game like the great ones in any sport. ... He's going to develop some skills in the passing attack where he's going to be a huge asset because you get him in space and he's dangerous. And now, today's game is working inside out. Meaning that the inside guys are the most important parts of the game -- the tight end, the slot receiver, the running back -- finding those matchups.
"You get him matched up with a linebacker one-on-one in space in the passing attack, it's open. So now his goals can be -- he's already done 2,000 yards -- he can be 1,500 and 1,000 yards. He can be 1,000 and 1,000. He can be 1,500, 1,500. And he's capable of doing that because of his skill set.
"So he's a perfect fit in today's game in being a running back in that capacity."
Later George cites Marshall Faulk as the perfect example for CJ to consider.
We don't want to put too much into one small slice of one preseason game, but Johnson wasn't making anyone think of Faulk with his work in Seattle.
It's time for him to show he's broken the bad habits he fell into last year and that he can be the kind of double-edged weapon George is talking about.
Otherwise, the Titans will need to be quicker to move away from him on offense than they were last year.