Report: Andre Johnson asks Texans to release him
Houston Texans receiver Andre Johnson (80) catches a touchdown pass against Indianapolis Colts cornerback Greg Toler at NRG Stadium. (Matthew Emmons/USA TODAY Sports)
Houston Texans wide receiver Andre Johnson, already given permission to work out a trade to another team, now wants to be released.
Johnson's agent, Kennard McGuire, told Pro Football Talk on Wednesday that he has asked the Texans to release the star player which would make him a free agent.
After 12 seasons with the Texans, Johnson received permission from the Texans on Monday to work out a trade to another team. The arrangement was reached after Johnson was told he would face a reduced role with the Texans in 2015.
"After 12 years of being a model citizen, an ambassador, and the face of this franchise, he deserves more than a mishandled P.R. campaign that showcases only one side of the story," McGuire told Pro Football Talk. "After 12 years, he deserves to be sent off in a better way."
Johnson, who will turn 34 in July, has two seasons left on his contract. He is due a base pay of $10.5 million in 2015 with a salary-cap hit of $16.1 million, plus a $1 million workout bonus. His base salary in 2016 would be $11 million plus another $1 million workout bonus, and he would count $14,675,000 against the salary cap. The Houston Chronicle reported that the Texans would clear $8.82 million in space against the cap by trading or releasing Johnson.
"I knew it was going to happen," Johnson told FOX26 Sports in Houston. "That's pretty much it. I think the role that they had for me, it wasn't a role for me.
"I don't know how you tell a guy who catches 85 balls that he'll only probably catch 40. I just didn't feel like it was a role for me to fit in. So I felt like why sit there and be miserable when I can go somewhere else and be able to show my talents. I feel like the role they were trying to put me in I would be held back from maximizing my talents. I feel like that was the best thing for both sides.
"It's business. I understand that side of it. I'm not angry about it. I knew at some point in time this day would come."
After news broke Monday, Johnson posted on his Instagram account: "Thank you Houston for a wonderful 12 years. And a special thanks to all the fans who have supported me throughout my career. #TeamEighty"
Johnson holds all of the Texans' major receiving records: 1,012 receptions, 13,597 receiving yards, 64 receiving touchdowns.