You probably already knew this but Larry Johnson is an ass. He always has been an ass and it looks as though he always will be an ass.
Larry made some comments recently on WPGC’s Lil’ Mo Show in DC that confirmed this fact.
Before I get to that, lets take a quick look at how Johnson went from KC Pro Bowler to Cincinnati Bengal to Washington Redskin.
It all started when Johnson was riding the bench behind Chiefs great, Priest Holmes. Johnson had been complaining publicly about his lack of playing time, despite being the back up for one of the games best running backs. Johnson was too stupid to understand that he was drafted as an insurance policy to Holmes. Priest had been injury prone and Kansas City wanted another dynamic back available in case he went down again, which he eventually did. Larry was always going to get his chance but instead of being a humble, team player and waiting his turn, he griped to the media.
Johnson’s behavior led then Chiefs head coach, Dick Vermiel to say that it was time for Johnson to “take his diapers off.”
Vermiel’s words created quite a stir. Johnson was pissed and the media seemed to think it was uncalled for.
We all now know, Dick was right. Vermiel knew Johnson was immature and hotheaded and that is likely why he was keeping him on the bench. Holmes was injured and Vermiel was simply saying Johnson needed to grow up and grow up fast.
For a while, LJ made Vermeil look foolish for sitting him for so long. He went off once he finally got on the field, racking up huge rushing numbers. Still, if you were paying attention you could see that Johnson wasn’t anywhere near as talented as Holmes.
Larry was a downhill runner. His success depended on their being a hole in the offensive line so he could get to the 2nd level. Once he did, it was harder for the smaller defensive backs to bring him down and he often was able to get yards after contact.
But if that hole wasn’t there, Larry wasn’t going anywhere. He never possessed blazing speed. If he did break loose he was almost always caught from behind before he reached the endzone. He was a lazy blocker and was not really a threat to catch the ball out of the backfield.
Holmes on the other hand was faster, more elusive and could block and catch. Priest was a complete player and he deserved to be starting over Johnson. He also wasn’t an ass. Vermiel was right. Larry needed to take the diapers off and grow up.
Unfortunately for the Chiefs, he never did.
During his time with the Chiefs, Larry was arrested 4 times for domestic violence incidents. He plead guilty to 2 incidents of disturbing the piece and was slapped with 2 years probation and 40 hours of community service. All of this was on top of a couple of suspensions from both the league and the team.
When Todd Haley and Scott Pioli came to Kansas City, general opinion was that they would cut Johnson. The Chiefs won a hearing against Johnson last summer that would have enabled the team to get out of his contract if they cut him before the season. Johnson knew this so he shut up, put his head down and went to work. The Chiefs bought his act and kept him on the team.
Once he got paid, Johnson slowly went back to his immature ways. He could no longer produce on the field. The great Chiefs offensive line that helped him rise to stardom was long gone and the new guys weren’t good enough to make up for the running back’s shortcomings. All Larry’s faults as a back were on display. He wasn’t running hard. He needed a hole and not a crease to get to the next level. He wouldn’t even try to make guys miss, often going down on first contact, whether it was with an opposing player or his own offensive lineman.
With Johnson handling lead back duties for the first half of 2009, the Chiefs offense was abysmal. He was averaging about 2.7 yards per carry constantly forcing the Chiefs into 3rd and long situations.
Frustration, Larry decided that it was his coaches fault he no longer had it. He actually attacked Haley, the guy who kept giving him the ball over and over again when it was evident he couldn’t do anything with it. He went on Twitter and made fun of his boss, always a wise move, pointing out that Haley had been a golfer and not a football player while growing up. When fans called him out on his words, Larry proceeded to get into a public fight with them, at one point using a gay slur. Later, for good measure, Larry directed the same gay slur at a reporter in the locker room and it was caught on tape.
Finally, the Chiefs have had enough of Larry and they cut him. It says a lot when a team will pay you millions of dollars to just go away.
The Bengals, who seem to serve as the NFL’s halfway house, picked up Larry following his exile from Kansas City. They needed an insurance policy for Cedric Benson and they were able to get LJ on the cheap. They didn’t bother to resign him after the season.
Johnson then went from the “halfway house” to the “running back retirement home” known as the Washington Redskins. He is now competing with a pack of other over the hill, washed up backs for playing time.
Which leads us to today.
Let’s take a look at some of Larry’s quotes from his interview on the Lil’ Mo Show. Thanks to the Washington Post for the quotes.
Lil’ Mo asked Larry about being a Scorpio.
“I have to ask you the Unthinkable,” she said. “With us both being Scorpios, I can attest to say that sometimes our passion is misconstrued for being angry, which will ultimately have people say, ‘Well, you need anger management.’ You caught a couple of cases, and what was the deal with that?”
“You know us Scorpios, we always have that passion for something,” Johnson replied. “And usually if we’ve got that passion, we’re kind of like outspoken, and we like to do our own thing, and we kind of stick out from the rest of the crowd. And me being in Kansas City, being that it’s real small, I became targeted with certain things.”
If you are literate, most of that doesn’t make any sense but bare with me. Johnson wasn’t finished.
“You know, the first couple of incidents, I would say with me, Scorpios, when you love two or three different people, they really get a stronghold on [you], because you give so much passion out, and they seem to cross the line on that tip. But after that, it was just being in the club and all that in Kansas City, it was just a small environment.”
Umm…I gather Larry is trying to say that he is not a twerp who can’t control his anger, he is just a passionate Scorpio. I think. And because Kansas City is “small” and Larry’s passion is so big, it was a pressure packed environment for him.
Here is the best part:
“And me being that person, that guy at that time point, people looking at me like I was Mr. Big Stuff and thought I was the best thing in Kansas City since barbeque. You know, I had a target on my back, so after that situations, everything else kind of died down. It was great for me to get out of that city, because it was just a lot of jealousy, envy and hate that came with being a part of that city.”
Ohhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhhh! Oh. Oh. Oh.
Now I get it. Now I understand. None of this crap that went down in Kansas City with Larry Johnson shoving women around and spitting drinks in their faces, none of that was Larry’s fault!
Larry isn’t a crazy, short-tempered bully! He’s a SCORPIO! Ohhhhhhhhhhhhh. Duh! He should have explained that to the judge. They clearly would have let him off. It isn’t assault! It’s passion!
Don’t you see? We’ve had it all wrong! LARRY is the victim here. Larry has a target on his back. Why? Because, err…Chiefs fans loved him. That is what he said anyway.
“…people looking at me like I was Mr. Big Stuff and thought I was the best thing in Kansas City since barbeque. You know, I had a target on my back…”
Larry was just too big for Kansas City. Don’t you see it? The fans were just jealous of Larry and all his talent and money and fame. That is why they started a petition to have the team shitcan him before he broke Priest Holmes’ franchise rushing record. Because they were jealous of Larry.
What a freaking joke!
Larry still doesn’t get it. He is still blaming everyone else for his own screw-ups. Calling out the good people of Kansas City is his lowest move yet.
Kansas City fans are wonderful to their sports heroes. They revere guys like Len Dawson, Buddy Bell and Willy Lanier. They started a petition to stop Larry Johnson from breaking Priest Holmes’ record because they loved Priest Holmes and thought Johnson was a scumbag. Those fans didn’t want someone like Johnson representing the organization in the record books.
Larry Johnson was never anything but a 2nd rate running back that benefited from perhaps one of the greatest offensive lines ever to step on a football field. He was running behind Waters, Roaf and Shields, all 3 of which will likely end up in the Hall of Fame. He had two productive years and that is it. He sabotaged his team with his ridiculous behavior. He threw both Herm Edwards and Todd Haley under the buss when both gave him more of a chance than he ever deserved.
His last act has been to insult the fans of Kansas City.
Larry Johnson is nothing but a washed up, violent, arrogant jerk. The diapers have stayed on and it doesn’t look like they will ever come off.
Vermiel was right.