By Shawn Muller-

(CBS) I am just like every other human being out there that hates seeing professional athletes holding out for more money. When you do not even come close to making anywhere near what even the lowest paid athletes get paid, hearing a star saying—for example– that $15 million dollars for two years is not enough money, it makes you want to shake your head in disbelief.

How can a number like $15 million dollars not be “enough” money to live on?

Well, that isn’t really the point.

Athletes are always looking for a fair market value, just like you or I do when we are looking for a new job or a raise. If you know you were more qualified or worth more than what a job was/is offering as a salary, you would probably want to try and re-negotiate for a higher sum. Or you are going to hold out for a better offer.

That is all Tennessee Titans running back Chris Johnson was doing. And I don’t blame him one bit, because apparently it worked.

Johnson and the Tennessee Titans have reached a new deal on an extension that is believed to be worth $53 million with $30 million in guaranteed money.

This was a slam dunk for both sides. Tennessee keeps the most explosive running back in the league and Johnson gets the contract he was looking for.

His career numbers don’t lie. Johnson is definitely worth the investment.

Since Johnson entered the NFL in 2008, he has been a three-time Pro Bowler, 1st-Team All-Pro, rushed for more than 2,000 yards in a single season, and set an NFL record for most yards from scrimmage in a single season at 2,509 yards. Yet, Johnson is only set to make $1.065 million dollars in 2011.

If those numbers didn’t scream: “Pay the man, Tennessee!” then I don’t know what would have.

The Titans had a Ferrari that they were fortunate enough to be making payments on like they owned a Geo Tracker. They had gotten away with it for a long time, but the original owner realized he was getting duped….and he wanted what was rightfully due to him.

I said the same thing about Matt Forte (who now may actually be close to a new deal) and the Chicago Bears earlier in the pre-season. Since Forte entered the league, statistically, he is one of the top five running backs in the NFL yet, he is only due to make a little over $500,000 this season. He has proved his worth on the field and should be paid like it.

Thankfully, it appears that Jerry Angelo may also be coming to his senses.

Running backs have the shortest shelf-life of any position in the NFL. If these guys are going to make their money, they have to strike when the iron is hot because the next hit they take could end up being their last. When you put up some of the best numbers in the league from the time you set foot on a football field—which both Johnson and Forte have– you need to be paid like a star.

Apparently Chris Johnson is now get paid what he is worth.

Next up is Matt Forte.

shawn muller 2 9 Muller: Chris Johnson Gets His Payday, But What About Forte?

Shawn Muller

Shawn Muller has lived in the great city of Chicago for 7 years. He is a 2002 graduate of the University of Wisconsin-Madison and, in October of 2010, Shawn received his certificate in radio broadcasting. In his free time, Shawn enjoys spending time with his wife Melissa and 3 year old daughter Ava, catching any live sporting event, and traveling. Check out his radio show, Grab Some Bench with Muller and Bangser” every Thursday night at 8:30 P.M., at Read more of his blogs here.

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