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Johnson has something to prove in 2012.
Three main factors can be attributed to the struggles of Chris Johnson in 2011.
First, and most obvious, is the hold out.
Chris Johnson started the regular season out of football shape. It clearly plagued him throughout the year.
Over and over last season, fans saw Johnson go down after first contact. The back put on nearly 10 pounds of muscle over the summer—showing clear commitment to success.
The second factor was poor play from the offensive line.
Head coach Mike Munchak was open about his disappointment in the squad— particularly because that is his area of expertise.
“Munch” brought in veteran Steve Hutchinson to bolster the inside. Guard Leroy Harris and center Eugene Amano have a lot to prove this summer.
Lastly, I blame offensive coordinator Chris Palmer.
Although Palmer did a nice job of trying to utilize Chris Johnson in space, enough with the stretch zone already.
Johnson is a quick hitter and you're wasting his best asset in running a play that requires patience and road graters on the offensive line.
Sometimes you just have to run the dive for three yards and move on.
Palmer will learn Chris Johnson, and Chris Johnson will learn that, at some point, it’s better to gain one yard than lose seven.