- Paul Kuharsky, ESPN Staff Writer
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NASHVILLE, Tenn. -- Wearing a Cincinnati Reds hat and the sort of grin that comes after a huge payday, Chris Johnson met with the Tennessee media Friday evening.
JohnsonPoints of note out of that chat...
He said he agreed with Mike Reinfeldt when the GM suggested the prolonged holdout amounted to a “family argument situation.”
On getting up to football speed: “I’ve been working out every single day just staying in shape. Once I get out there on the field, that something for me and the coaches to get worked out, just to see how my body reacts off the things that they give me. In my mindset and the player that I am, of course I feel I am ready to take the whole load and be out there on Sunday. But you never know your body until you go through the situation.”
He didn’t watch much of the Titans in their four preseason games because he found it difficult to watch his teammates without him.
On avoiding the sort of injury that sidelines a lot of holdouts after they return: “I’m sure other guys that went through my situation and went out there and something happened to them, I am pretty sure they tried all the remedies and stretching and doing different things. But I think it’s just a situation where you have to pray about it and ask God to keep you safe out there and hopefully you don’t pull anything.”
The goals are a playoff appearance and a Super Bowl. Only after he mentioned them did he say he’ll always want to rush for 2,000 yards.
On staying motivated: “I feel like if I’m not the best player at my position or the best player out there on the field I don’t feel like I am doing my job. Just because I got this deal I don’t think that I won’t play as hard as I’ve been playing.”
He’s not going to willingly hand carries over to Javon Ringer and/or Jamie Harper early in the season while getting up to speed. “I’d like to get all the reps, that’s just the type of player I am,” he said to laughter. “At the end of the day it’s about more than the big contract and all the money, that’s the business side… When I’m here I want to be the best. When it’s time to win, I want the team to count on me. I want to put the team on my shoulders and steer us to victory.”
Johnson contacted St. Louis running back Steven Jackson and New York Jets cornerback Darrelle Revis before his holdout to talk to them about their experiences. They told him to be prepared for it to be difficult and to be lonely. Throughout the dispute he said they called on him to check on how he was doing. “That helped a lot,” Johnson said.