Houston Texans news: Peter King says Cardinals won DeAndre Hopkins trade

Running back David Johnson (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images)
Running back David Johnson (Photo by Christian Petersen/Getty Images) /

In his Football Morning in America weekly column, Peter King gave his opinion on the final outcome of the DeAndre Hopkins trade with the the Arizona Cardinals.

Many knew when the Houston Texans news broke that Bill O’Brien had traded star wide receiver DeAndre Hopkins for David Johnson and draft picks that the win seemingly went to the Cardinals before the draft even took place.

Even with the Texans gaining Johnson as their starting running back, and the Texans eventually drafting defensive tackle Ross Blacklock with the 40th overall selection of the 2020 NFL, the winner of this trade is still the Cardinals for the fact they have Hopkins on their roster. Along with the Cardinals gaining Hopkins, they drafted defensive tackle Rashard Lawrence with the pick they received.

Though Houston still has a fourth-round pick from this trade next year, the Texans news is simple for the outcome of this trade … losing Hopkins in any trade is more than likely resulting in a loss in the trade made.

Peter King of NBC Sports wrote Monday in his Football Morning in America column about how he feels the result of the trade is the winner being the Cardinals, and he’s correct in his assessment of the final outcome of this deal. King had the following to say in the column that was released this morning by NBC Sports:

"“The only way this trade isn’t a disaster for Houston is if Johnson approximates his 2016 form. Four years is a lifetime for a back, so this looks like a clear win for Hopkins and the Cardinals.”"

For David Johnson to be the player he was back in 2016 is asking a lot of anyone, but especially a running back who lost his starting job last season to Kenyon Drake while a member of the Cardinals.

Johnson can still be a quality running back, but asking for him to be the player he was four seasons ago is a bit of a reach because of the fact he’s four years older, has been injured since then, and that season he was excellent with not only his rushing game, but his receiving game as well.

Remember, Johnson totaled 293 carries that season for 1,239 yards with 16 rushing scores and a 4.2 yards per carry average. That season also saw a career-high in receptions with 80 for 879 yards and four touchdowns, averaging 11 yards per reception.

The following season saw an injury occur, and in ’18 Johnson rushed for 940 yards with seven touchdowns, along with catching 50 passes for 446 yards and three touchdowns. This past season, the running back had just 94 carries in his final season in Arizona with two rushing scores, while adding 36 receptions for 370 yards and four touchdowns.

Since his injury in 2017, Johnson hasn’t been the same player he once was, but that is the gamble the Texans have taken with trading an All-Pro wide receiver for a draft pick and a veteran running back.

Though Johnson caught 36 of the 43 targets that came his way, his rushing numbers stand out because he averaged just 3.7 yards per carry, so for the Texans news to be positive following this trade, the ypc average has to be better than under four yards.

Johnson did receive a 72.2 overall grade from Pro Football Focus for his 2019 season, but in comparison, the ’16 season that set the standard for David Johnson had him graded at 79.9 that year.

Time will only tell how the Texans and Cardinals will finalize this trade, but the pressure is on all parties to succeed with players knowing they have things to prove to their new teams and critics alike.

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King is most likely correct in his assessment of the trade, but it will be exciting to see how Johnson meshes with Deshaun Watson and the rest of the offense in 2020, and the same could be said about Hopkins and the Cardinals as well.