While the idea of Andre Johnson catching passes from Tom Brady is enough to make any New England Patriots fan start salivating, it’s unlikely that dream scenario will become a reality.
Johnson has made it clear that he wants out of Houston, and the 33-year-old reportedly already has drawn interest from four teams that would be happy to add the seven-time Pro Bowl receiver to their squad. But could the Patriots be one of those teams making a push for Johnson?
Probably not, according to The Boston Globe’s Ben Volin, and for a variety of reasons.
For starters, Johnson is set to make $10 million this season, a hefty chunk of change for which New England simply doesn’t have the salary cap space. Johnson would have to heavily restructure his contract and take a significant pay cut if he were to take his talents to Foxboro, both of which are unlikely.
There’s also that whole matter of the Texans not being willing to trade Johnson. The team has refused Johnson’s request to leave town so far, and after a 2-14 season, Houston isn’t exactly eager to depart with one of its few stars.
While it’s not entirely impossible that Johnson will don a Patriots jersey in the coming months, it would require New England to get creative financially, and it also would mean Johnson must be willing to re-work his contract. Essentially, it would be a long shot.
UPDATE (8:58 p.m.): Well, this is interesting. A source told NFL Media’s Ian Rapoport that Johnson would restructure his contract to help his new team fall under the cap. Johnson will not take a pay cut, though.