Can Derrick Johnson return to form in 2015?


Sep 15, 2013; Kansas City, MO, USA; Kansas City Chiefs inside linebacker Derrick Johnson (56) looks to the crowd before the game with the Dallas Cowboys at Arrowhead Stadium. Kansas City won the game 17-16. Mandatory Credit: John Rieger-USA TODAY Sports

The Kansas City Chiefs lost their anchor in the middle of the defense in inside linebacker Derrick Johnson during Week 1 of 2014. Johnson, who ruptured his Achilles against the Tennessee Titans, has been trying to make a comeback for the 2015 season.

"“I’m feeling really good. That few days off helped me out a lot, so I’m feeling good” Johnson said in his press conference this week. He suffered some inflammation in his knee during OTA’s so he was sidelined for awhile. The Chiefs also don’t want to push him just yet, as re-aggravating that injury could spell the end for the veteran."

Johnson seems to be itching to get back to the field. Even mentioning that he is ready to start hitting guys when the Chiefs begin their training camp on July 24.

The road will not be easy for the 11 year veteran. Injuries to the Achilles can be career changing, and some athletes never fully recover from the tear, depending on the severity. However, Johnson seems to be defining the odds as he has seemingly made a full recovery and it ready to get back to football.

November 17, 2013; Denver, CO, USA; Kansas City Chiefs inside linebacker Derrick Johnson (56) during the third quarter against the Denver Broncos at Sports Authority Field at Mile High. The Broncos defeated the Chiefs 27-17. Mandatory Credit: Kyle Terada-USA TODAY Sports

Johnson is also set to reach a landmark in his fantastic career with the Chiefs. He is only a mere 14 tackles from becoming the all-time leading tackler for the organization, a record currently held by Gary Spani with 999. It is highly likely that the Pro-Bowler will break the record in the first quarter of the season.

"“That would mean a lot” Johnson said about breaking the record. “That just let’s you know that all the hard work paid off. You know, I’ve been here for awhile. The good thing is I have another chance, I’m going to take advantage of the opportunity that I have. It’s gonna be sweet when it happens.”"

The big question for not only the Chiefs, but for Johnson, is can he make a full comeback? Yes, the injury was bad and it could have been career ending for a lesser player. But he is tough and it is really showing throughout the team’s OTA’s and mini camp. His dedication to the game and to improving himself is evident in all he has been doing.

If Johnson can stay healthy throughout training camp and the preseason, it will be a good indication that his health has fully recovered. If Johnson can absorb contact without issue, he will be on pace to make his return to the regular season.

What do you think, Addicts? Do you have faith the veteran will make his return and break the record? Let us know in the comments.

Thanks for reading.

Go Chiefs!