|Tuesday, July 22
Updated: July 24, 2:05 PM ET
Houston hopes Johnson will boost wideout corps
ESPN.com news services
"I've seen some of my former teammates in college that held out and didn't get into camp on time and I didn't want to follow suit,'' Johnson said at a news conference Tuesday. "If you're not in camp on time you tend to miss out on a lot. I didn't want to miss anything. I wanted to be here on time and hopefully make it to that big goal, the Super Bowl.''
ESPN.com reported last Friday in a "Tip Sheet" column that many of the most essential elements of the contract, a seven-year deal in which the final season is voidable, already had been agreed to in principle and that all that basically remained was to commit the deal to contract language.
It is believed the contract is similar in many ways to the one signed by the third player chosen in the 2002 draft, Detroit Lions quarterback Joey Harrington, who received a six-year deal that the NFL Players Association assessed as worth up to $48 million.
Sources told ESPN.com that the initial signing bonus and second-tier option bonus for Johnson total about $13.501 million.
"I've been through some holdouts,'' Texans general manager Charley Casserly said. "I've been through some that ruined careers, some that resulted in players being injured in training camp. And I've been through some others where a rookie went to the Pro Bowl because he was in camp on time.''
Johnson will join last year's starters, Corey Bradford and Jabar Gaffney, in helping the Texans improve their receiving, ranked last in the NFL last season. He participated in the Texans' minicamps prior to his signing.
Johnson caught 92 passes for 1,831 yards and 20 touchdowns and played in two national championship games for Miami. He finished fifth on Miami's all-time list and he also had 11 receptions for 253 yards in two bowl games.
Only Michael Irvin (26) and Lamar Thomas (23) have more career touchdowns at Miami than Johnson.
In Miami's 2001 national championship game, Johnson caught seven passes for 199 yards and two touchdowns and shared Rose Bowl MVP honors with quarterback Ken Dorsey.
Texans coach Dom Capers expects Johnson's early work to help him make the adjustment to the pros.
"I think back to the first meeting we had with Andre, his uncle Andre Milton and his mother Karen and as we left there, Andre Milton said, 'If you decided to take Andre he won't be late getting into training camp,''' Capers said.
"You can't underestimate with a young player being in camp from day one. There are so many things you have to deal with from a mental standpoint and getting ready to play.''
The Texans begin their second season with conditioning tests on Friday and two workouts on Saturday.