Moss’ Tennessee arrival gives needed boost to Johnson

Posted Nov. 15, 2010 @ 5:31 p.m.
Posted By Michael Blunda

This may not be Randy Moss' year, but no matter where he goes, he seems to help somebody else's production.

Moss began 2010 by not doing much in New England, but his presence was critical for other members of the Patriots' offense. Both QB Tom Brady and WR Wes Welker played their best when Moss was around, but weren't very effective until Week 10.

Then Moss got dealt to Minnesota, where he didn't wind up being much of a boon to Brett Favre's status. However, he did help Percy Harvin break out of a funk by allowing him to move inside. Harvin has continued to play at a high level since Moss' release, but he reportedly was none too happy when the Vikings sent Moss packing.

Now, the seven-time Pro Bowler has joined the Titans, making his debut last Sunday. Although it didn't go very well — he had one catch for 26 yards on four targets — his arrival was tremendous news for another member of the offense: RB Chris Johnson.

The No. 1 overall pick in most fantasy drafts, Johnson hasn't been giving owners quite what they expected. While he did enter Week 10 with eight TDs, he also came in with a 4.1-yard average, down quite a bit from his 5.6 yards per carry in 2009. He also has made virtually no difference in the passing game. But all that could be about to change.

With Moss stretching the field and forcing defenses to respect the pass, C.J. ran for 117 yards and a TD on 17 carries at Miami, a much more efficient performance than he has had in recent weeks. That should continue during the second half, as Johnson should find running room easier to come by now that Moss gives the Titans a multi-dimensional attack.

While the running game should thrive in the second half, Moss could end up being a glorified decoy for his third team this season. Given the injury issues and inconsistent play from QBs Vince Young and Kerry Collins, expecting the 33-year-old receiver to be a significant contributor down the stretch might not be the wisest idea. The Titans would much rather run the ball than air it out, so if Johnson continues to roll like he did in Week 10, they'll want to keep giving him the rock.

Moss might be on track to finish with his worst campaign since his Oakland days, but at least he's improving situations for those around him.