Whoa, Canada! Chad Is an Alouette
Former wacky wideout Chad Johnson -- or Ochocinco, as he was legally known for a while -- not only changes his name back and forth, but now he changes leagues.
This summer, the once notorious receiver will be playing north of the border and humming O Canada this summer for the CFL.
However, it wasn't like the 36-year-old was a coveted commodity up there. He had to knock on a few doors:
Monsieur Johnson was on the field with the Montréal Alouettes Tuesday for the start of their three-day minicamp. He obviously got the job done.
The reason for him making the team, though, is just as self-serving as ever. And that's putting it mildly. Johnson insists that "It's just football. It's football" and then goes on to say, "It's not about Montréal. It's about the opportunity to be able to play football again, something I love."
Same old Chad. It's all about him.
Will the publicity and attention that comes with having a player like Chad around put butts in seats? Is that the team's reason for inviting him?
Alouettes general manager Jim Popp brushed off the idea of it being anything other than a football move, saying, "It's real. He's in great shape. He wants to play and we'll see how things are."
But even the man formerly known as Ochocinco hints at something different. "Power of Twitter," he said, grinning. And Twitter does play a part in this. Let’s face it. Chad has quite a following -- over 3.6million, believe it or not -- and even Popp has to admit, "None of you would know he was here unless it got tweeted out."
Camp observers noted he can still run routes. And since the CFL game is passer-friendly, then No 85 should be right at home.
So, why is he up there? Love of the game? Limelight? Child support? All of these?
Whatever the motivation, he won’t be doing it for riches. The salary cap in the CFL is $4.4million per team. Johnson has had years where he's made about twice that much by himself.
That means the dude formerly known to his circles as Ocho will have to be OK with the average salary of around $85,000.