The Cardinals announced that they have placed running back Chris Johnson on IR-DTR, as Darren Urban of AZCardinals.com tweets. In related moves (link), the Cardinals promoted running back Kerwynn Williams from the practice squad, signed cornerback Corey White, and cut cornerback Robert Nelson Jr.
The unfortunate news brings an end to one of, if not the, best comeback stories in the NFL this season. In 2015, the 30-year-old enjoyed a resurgence that few imagined could be possible over the offseason. In 11 games (9 starts) for the Cards, Johnson rushed for 814 yards and three scores off of 196 carries. If he plays again this season, it would have to be in the Super Bowl.
Last season for the Jets, Johnson ran for just 663 yards, the first time in his career he recorded fewer than 1,000 yards in a season. However, he averaged a respectable 4.3 yards per carry for Gang Green in 2014 and the Cardinals saw potential in Johnson when no other team in the league did. The ground game was a weak spot in Arizona last season, as the team’s leading rusher, Andre Ellington, totaled just 660 yards, averaging 3.3 yards per carry, prompting the Cards to make the low-risk, potentially high-reward signing.
Williams, 24, has just one carry with the Cardinals to his credit in 2015. Last season, Williams ran for 246 yards off of 53 carries in five games for Arizona.
In October, the Cardinals went on record saying that they would look into an extension for CJ2K. Obviously, the Cards will now wait until the offseason to discuss their future with the veteran.