Seven year veteran running back Larry Johnson has been released by the Kansas City Chiefs and is now on waivers. It just so happens that the Houston Texans are in need of a solid, smash mouth goal-line back like Johnson. Having talent like that as an option for the backfield would be a definite plus for the Texans on-the-field.
The only problem is that Johnson's off-the-field problems may not outweigh what he can do for you on-the-field. His troubles are extensive ranging from separate assault charges for spitting on, pouring a drink on and physically abusing women to his more recent use of Twitter to spit out his "opinions" through offensive slurs and the bashing of the talents of his Head Coach.
Texans Owner Bob McNair has a history of avoiding players with troubled pasts, so why would this situation be any different?
For starters, this may be the first time one of these troubled players fit a needed position where they could easily come in and make an impact. His addition WOULD help the team make a push for the play-offs. No more Moats, Slaton or Brown goal-line stuffs or fumbles. Larry Johnson will pound his way to pay dirt as he has proven many times in the past; all the while holding on to the football.
Worst case scenario is that the Texans bring him in and release the ineffective Chris Brown. If he messes up off-the-field or doesn't help the team much, it's very easy to cut losses with a guy like this at the end of the season. No long term contract or anything - simply send the guy packing.
Best case scenario is that he comes in and scores 6-8 touchdowns for the Texans over the next 7 games and then 2 in the play-offs (I've got my fingers crossed). It really may be the push the team needs. Indirectly bringing a strong ball handler like Johnson in may also help Steve Slaton overcome his recent fumbling issues as well. Not only will he be able to offer the younger running back some ball-handling insight, but his presence may also make Slaton work a little harder to keep his roster spot.
All in all, picking up Johnson would be a good thing.
Having him on a team with higher moral standards like the Houston Texans might be a good thing for all parties involved. If he needs a little maturing, coming to this team might just do it for him. It seems to be working for slightly troubled Jacoby Jones. Placing Johnson at a locker near Demeco Ryans and Dunta Robinson might help him quickly become part of the team as those leaders would most likely take him under their wing and keep him in line.
And I have a feeling that Kubiak and the Houston fans would have zero-tolerence for him acting like a "jack-ass" too, so we wouldn't have to worry much.
All name-calling aside let's face it, there is always a possibility that some athletes get falsely accused and sometimes falsely convicted of crimes for someone else's gain. A lot of these guys have a track record for a reason (Pac-Man Jones for example), but at times these high-profile athletes can become targets (Duke Lacrosse team).
That being said, Larry Johnson's ridiculousness on Twitter is nothing but his own stupidity. However, there's always the possibility that the assault charges could be moments where he was targeted for extortion by the crazy women that he chose to surround himself with.
Some of the women that athletes choose to spend time with are ones who many times have questionable intentions at best. What's to say Johnson wasn't an easy target that surrounded himself with money-hungry tramps who had nothing better to do than make up stories that slandered him for their gain? While not probable, this idea is still a possibility. Hey, it happened to Shawn Merriman. (Damn you, Tila! You two faced bi-sexual attention starved harlot!)
I say give the man a chance. For the Texans benefit it certainly wouldn't hurt to have the ability to give a guy the ball on goal-line situations and feel the reassurance of someone being able to pound the ball in instead of putting it on the turf...regardless of who he may or may not be assaulting off the field.