The CJ2K era is over in Tennessee, just the latest step by the Titans in their franchise makeover.
The Titans told Chris Johnson they are releasing him Friday after six seasons to avoid paying $8 million the running back is due in 2014, along with the final three seasons left on the $53.5 million contract he signed in September 2011. His release comes before the Titans start their offseason program Monday with new coach Ken Whisenhunt.
General manager Ruston Webster said the Titans thank Johnson for his contributions, setting so many franchise records and being durable over his six seasons with Tennessee.
“We have had an open dialogue with Chris’ agent, Joel Segal, over the last few weeks, and we appreciate the patience and professionalism they have shown throughout this process,” Webster said in statement. “We made an effort to trade Chris but were unable to do so.”
The Titans have been busy working to replace Johnson, who turns 29 in September. They agreed with Dexter McCluster on a three-year deal at the start of free agency after signing Shonn Greene in March 2013. The Titans also re-signed Jackie Battle recently, along with reaching a one-year deal for kick returner and running back Leon Washington March 11.
Seahawks extend Carroll contract: The first major contract extension finalized by the Seattle Seahawks following their Super Bowl title was a commitment to coach Pete Carroll and to an ideology that finally proved successful at the professional level.
While getting stars such as Earl Thomas and Richard Sherman locked up remains important, the focus for the Seahawks was making sure Carroll was sticking around.
“This was a huge priority for us coming into the offseason,” Seattle general manager John Schneider said Friday. “We knew it was around the corner and it was, quite honestly, we’re trying to take care of our own people and keep our young players together. But where do you start? You start at the top.”
The Seahawks locked up Carroll through the 2016 season with a three-year extension announced Friday. The new contract rips up the final year of the original five-year deal Carroll signed in January 2010, and cleared up any uncertainty whether the 62-year-old coach wanted to stick around after his original deal expired.
Giants sign TE Davis: The New York Giants agreed to a one-year contract on Friday with tight end Kellen Davis, whose previous team’s last game was a Super Bowl victory at the Giants’ stadium.
The 14th free agent signed by the Giants this offseason who played elsewhere last year, Davis spent his first five NFL seasons with Chicago. He joined the Seahawks one week into the 2013 season and played in every game the rest of the way except Seattle’s Super Bowl victory over Denver, when he was inactive.
Lions sign backup QB: Quarterback Dan Orlovsky is back with the Detroit Lions after signing a one-year contract.
Orlovsky spent the last two seasons with the Tampa Bay Buccaneers. He appeared in two games last season. He was drafted by the Lions in the fifth round of the 2005 draft and played his first four years in the NFL with Detroit.