Derrick Johnson Signs Five Year Contract Extension

In well-timed fashion (after a loss), the Kansas City Chiefs and OLB Derrick Johnson have, according to his agents, agreed to a 5 year contract extension worth $34 million dollars, with $15 million of that guaranteed. This is quite a leap of confidence and status for a player that probably would have been let go at the end of last season or given a much different deal had this been a normal year in terms of having a collective bargaining agreement.

The pride of the 2005 NFL Draft (Craphonso Thorpe, anyone?) impressed in the 4-3, then got lost in the fray of the 3-4 transition and finally prevailed this season as a solid inside linebacker. He leads the team with 65 tackles and, although he has a single interception for a touchdown, he could have potentially racked up a lot more. Many of the six pass knockdowns he’s recorded thus far were dropped interceptions.

Derrick Johnson is the first of many players that will get their second contract from the Chiefs. The amount of years in the  contract is a surprise to me. Not so much because he hasn’t proven himself but that the new regime hasn’t seen all that much of him. These are the same guys that allowed his playing time to be limited last season in what was clearly the wrong move. If you heard Todd Haley speak at all last year, they definitely weren’t hiding him as much as they buried him.

However, with the season the Chiefs are having right now, it is easy to forget the wayward decisions of more dismal times. For better or worse, the Chiefs have locked down a player that has made a difference in this now-great defense. Soon, Scott Pioli and the Chiefs will ponder the resigning of many other Chiefs nearing the ends of their contracts. For now, the Chiefs organization is doing what good organizations do: they lock down their players that they drafted and developed.

Here’s what the Twitterverse has to say:

@ OK, I'll admit it. Not giving him an A+ was kind of stupid. But DJ is playing at a level on D comparable to JC.
Brian McGannon
@ that's true. but if he played perfect he would have 3 more INT's lol
Good for DJ. He took last year's craziness like a man and is now having the best season of his career. Really good player, even better guy.
Kent Babb
The Chiefs have signed ILB Derrick Johnson to a 5-year, $34 million extension, reports Fox Sports.
Sports Radio 810 WHB

That’s about it as the story is still fresh. Check out Brian McGannon’s mid-season grades and Jason Tarwater’s Oakland game synopsis.

4 Comments Say Something
  • I like the move. DJ was my pick for comeback player of the year this year and I’m not going to lie, he’s looking like that guy.

    I still think Flowers is the best player on the defense, but DJ could be the most talented. He’s finally living up to the potential of being a No. 1 draft pick. It’s nice to see.

    More importantly, I think they’ve been working on this for awhile. It’s a good way to reward a guy like Johnson after what he went through last year. It shows the process works. Also, it shows me why they didn’t make a move for Moss.

    If Moss comes in and does what Moss does and still plays, Haley couldn’t look a guy like DJ in the eye again.

  • I’m glad the Chiefs re-signed him, but I think they could have paid a lot less.

  • @Jason: He is probably 3rd behind Flowers and Tamba Hali but he could still make the Pro Bowl. It’s good to see that the organization will think for the coaches when need be too.

    @Travis: It seems hard to research players salaries but, I do agree that it’s a stretch but not a huge one. It seems like a move made by the Chiefs because he was the only guy that is nearing the end. It’s a bad move if it prevents Flowers, Hali, Albert and other key position players from being signed.

  • I put him ahead of Hali because he’s more multi-faceted than Hali who is pretty much pure pass rusher. Johnson plays the run, plays the pass, rushes the passer. To use a baseball term: He’s Ken Griffey Jr., while Hali is Mark McGwire. Both are good, but one does more to help your team win.

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