Posted by Barrie on Tuesday, 10 November 2009

Could Larry Johnson's Tweets Land Him a Better Job?

Larry Johnson was released from his contract today at the 1-7 Kansas City Chiefs for “conduct detrimental to the club” - 2 tweets basically.

The first offence was questioning his own head coach, Todd Haley following the teams 37-7 loss in San Diego on October 25th, and then to frequently use the word “fag” as an insult, both around the media and on Twitter of all places (see example below).

That earned him a 1 game suspension for which he sat out Sunday's 24-21 defeat in Jacksonville, 75 yards short of breaking Priest Holmes' franchise rushing record, ending his Chiefs career with 5,996 rushing yards and 55 touchdowns.

Whilst he was still recovering from his initial attacks and suspension, he decided to insult more fans on Twitter, this time belittling fans about their earnings compared to his. This was the final straw for Chiefs general manager Scott Pioli. Larry Johnson, proud of his earnings is still owed $2,275,000 by the Kansas City Chiefs, but it's unclear at the moment as to whether he will receive the remainder of this season's salary after violating the franchise conduct.

Larry Johnson turned 30 later this month and was in his prime in the 2005 and 2006 seasons where he rushed for over 1,700 in both of them, earning his place in Hawaii at the Pro Bowl in both seasons. He broke his own franchise record in 2006 when he rushed for 1,789 yards and set an NFL record 416 carries in a single season in the process. They lost in the wildcards to the Indianapolis Colts in the playoffs that year.

Johnson had consistently been a nuisance amongst his own franchise and fans during his 6.5 years in Kansas, initially moaning about the lack of time on the field behind Priest Holmes and Derrick Blaylock on the depth chart and later about his salary. This season he had been largely unproductive behind a poor offensive line, averaging just 2.7 yards per carry, somewhat short of the 4.5 yards average he had coming into this season.

With the Chiefs having one of the poorest records in the league this season, Larry Johnson has opened himself up to play for a much better franchise. Already the 5-4 Houston Texans have expressed interest, with the running back himself expressing interest in signing for the Pittsburgh Steelers.

Larry Johnson can still do a job in the NFL. And he will certainly get another chance in the coming weeks, most likely at a team with more than 1 victory this season. However, his paycheck will be smaller than before and perhaps the amount of time he gets in the field too, so he may end up regretting those tweets.

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