The Houston Texans have a star wide receiver in Andre Johnson, but many are starting to ask a serious question now that he is 32 years old—has Andre Johnson lost a step?
It’s a valid question. You know the deal with the NFL—any time a player hits the age of 30 folks begin to look for his dive off a cliff.
So far that has not happened.
Still, according to Len Pasquarelli at The National Football Post, some opponents are suggesting Johnson is beginning to lost it:
The 10-year veteran still rates among the NFL’s premier wideouts – he started all 16 games in 2012, the first time that has occurred since 2009, and posted 112 catches – and there has been no real discernable drop-off. But some opponents suggest that Johnson has lost perhaps a half-step, and isn’t as explosive. Johnson had only four touchdown catches last season, his fewest since 2002 in a season in which he played at least nine games. So while the bigger emphasis has been on Hopkins, who should provide Houston and quarterback Matt Schaub a quality No. 2 starter, the club has privately allowed there is a need to start developing one of the other young wide receivers as well. Second-year veteran DeVier Posey had some flashes as a rookie in ’12, and fellow youngsters Keshawn Martin and Lestar Jean have promise as well. One of them needs to step up as a viable No. 3, and possible Johnson replacement in a few years.
Our Take: Johnson has yet to lose a step. Why? He’s never relied on a “step” anyway. He has not typically used elite speed to beat his opponents. Rather, Johnson uses his big frame and excellent route running abilities to make opponents pay.
Johnson performed just fine last year and will do so again in 2013. The Texans are scrambling to find a No. 2 across from him because they have not done a good job making player personnel decisions over the past few years.
That’s not Johnson’s fault. Any attempt to reflect the blame back on to him is a cop out.
Follow me on Twitter for more NFL news and analysis @Chris_Roling