FIGHTING WORDS: Does Larry Johnson deserve another shot?

At issue: Would you give former Kansas City Chiefs running back Larry Johnson a second chance?

Tyler Robinson: This diva should take a hike

No, I would never allow someone who is trying to destroy an already sunken ship a second chance.

The NFL is all about respect for the shield, whether it’s the coach or the players. You can’t go around bad mouthing the coach no matter how terrible he is, especially in this day and age when the media are vultures that pick at every opportunity to cause controversy.

As someone who played team sports – Pop Warner, to be exact – there was always one person who everybody hated: the whiner. He was that one kid who complained about how bad the team is and couldn’t say a nice word to save his life.

Well, the NFL has divas. Sorry, but this is the NFL, not Dreamgirls; it’s a team, not a player.

Here are some numbers: 132 for 358. That’s carries and yards, respectively. Here are two really important numbers: 0 and 29, for touchdown and age, respectively.

So, sorry Mr. Johnson, but enjoy that unemployment check.

Keith Cordero Jr.: I’m all about 10th chances

If I were a NFL team owner, I would have to say yes and give Johnson a second chance.

Despite being on the decline as a running back and turning 30 in nine days, Johnson has had a solid career for the Chiefs. Lets not forget that Johnson rushed for over 3,500 yards and 37 touchdowns in 2005 and 2006 combined, regardless of how long ago that may seem.

Johnson has struggled this year, knowing the Chiefs are in a rebuilding process. He is upset with the team, causing him to utter the slurs and negative comments about Chiefs first-year head coach Todd Haley.

Now that he is on the market, look for a contender to work him out and possibly sign him for a playoff push. If Johnson knows he can win, he will run the ball.

Salomon Fuentes: No production = no shot

The fact that the Chiefs are biting the bullet by taking Johnson’s $4.25 million base salary this year should warn anyone against signing him. Johnson has been a walking enigma over the last couple of years with cases of domestic abuse, making disparaging remarks about his head coach and now being guilty of hate speech.

The only players with checkered pasts who are given multiple chances in the NFL are those that teams see as having talent worth the gamble. Johnson does not fit that criterion.

Four or five years ago he might have, but now he’s another soon-to-be 30-year-old running back who is over the hill. Over the last three years he’s averaged only 3.5 yards per carry, and this year he’s down to 2.7.

Some might say he’s played poorly because he’s unmotivated by playing on a bad team and that he could follow Randy Moss’ footsteps in reviving his career elsewhere. Maybe, but wide receivers tend to age well. Team cancer-causing running backs typically don’t.

Tristan Tippet: Happy days are not here again

The Chiefs are a storied NFL franchise. The last time the Chiefs were in the playoffs was in 2006, when Larry Johnson totaled 2,199 yards.

Johnson was the Chiefs’ franchise player they were planning to build their team around. He knew that and decided to hold out the following training camp and cashed in for six years, $45 million – generous for a running back.

Then he came in out of shape and had a foot injury. Johnson’s combined yardage over two and a half years is not even close to his 2006 total.

Over that span, Johnson has been suspended. Last year, Johnson was benched for three games and suspended by Roger Goodell for one. Johnson was also sentenced to two years of probation for disturbing the peace, and accused of physical assault.

Just two weeks ago he criticized the Chiefs, and recklessly and maliciously attacked individuals in the organization. This wasn’t popping off to reporters; this was calculated and written for the public to read

Larry Johnson is what he is: a soon-to-be 30-year-old running back with zero integrity and serious character issues who ruined the Chiefs. I wouldn’t want my team gambling with a malcontent running back battling father time.

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