During an emotional Instagram video confession on May 19, former New York Jets running back Ty Johnson detailed the “non-football injury” that led to his unexpected release from the organization on April 26.
“So, over the past few months I’ve been trying to learn my laws of the universe, the 12 laws,” a dejected Johnson told followers after plunging into an ice bath recovery session. “And going through this process of recovering from surgery — I tore my pec, full sternal tear — if we except what’s going on and we know we have the ability to change it, then everything’s going to be alright.”
He went on: “It’s like a circle. Something happens, can I change it? Then, don’t worry. I can’t change it? Then, don’t worry. It’s a full cycle, man. Understanding my emotions and how to regulate my emotions through this process — because I’ve had some dark days. Dark, dark days, man.”
That’s when Johnson walked followers through the past month or so.
Ty Johnson Says Jets Cut Him After Initial Conversations on Injury & Surgery
As the Instagram reel continued, the free agent running back provided some inside information on his recent release from the Jets franchise.
“Obviously, went to New York,” Johnson began, relaying: “Told them [about the injury]. I told them even before this, I was like — ‘hey, was working out, [the torn pectoral] happened’ — saw the team doctor, he was like — ‘you need to get it fixed.’ Flew out the next day [to get surgery]. Came back happy that I got it done, even though I didn’t want to get it done. That following Wednesday, you’re outta there.”
That last part — “you’re outta there” — was said in a way that seemingly mimicked the Jets choosing to release him. The front office had just re-signed Johnson on March 23, prior to his injury.
“I was like, damn,” Johnson voiced in disbelief. “But at the end of the day, I know I’m going to be alright, I know God got my back. And just keep going forward, man.”
“That’s my little ice barrel talk of the day,” the ball carrier concluded. The candid video currently has over 730 likes and counting.
The video’s caption also read: “Run Your Race At Your Pace. The end goal isn’t Be All, End All. It’s the continuous desire to grow every day. Everything happens for you. Show the Gratitude for the life you live, the life that you have. It can always be worse and anything I’ve learned from this recovery process is the unwavering belief in myself and my abilities. Came home for camp Saturday, and thought this was a great opportunity to test out my new @icebarrel Appreciate y’all listening to my rant.”
Jets Replace Ty Johnson With 2 Rookies After Injury
Breece Hall, Michael Carter and Zonovan Knight headline the Jets running back room, but youth is now filling out the back end after Johnson’s unfortunate turn of events.
First, the organization drafted Pittsburgh half-back and kick returner Israel Abanikanda — a player with a lot of similarities to Johnson. The rookie is more of a home run threat than Johnson, but both offer change of pace, burst, special teams prowess and some ability as a receiver.
At Pitt, Abanikanda had 1,577 scrimmage yards in 2022 with 21 total touchdowns and 228 return yards.
The other addition is undrafted USC prospect Travis Dye. NFL Draft Buzz called Dye a “natural playmaker” with a “naturally low center of gravity and knows how to use it to his advantage.” Among his weaknesses were a lack of overwhelming speed and athleticism, as well as a shakiness in pass protection.
Dye suffered a season-ending leg injury in November of 2022, and is presumably still recovering to some extent.
The pair of rookies should be able to adequately fill the RB4 void left by Johnson, who carried the ball 30 times for 160 yards in 2022 with one touchdown and 88 receiving yards. He also returned three kickoffs and logged 192 snaps on special teams (appearing in all 17 games).
Jets Teammates Comment on Ty Johnson’s Instagram Confessional
Several Jets teammates reacted to Johnson’s eye-opening social media confessional in the comment section.
“Real spill 💯🤝🏽,” wrote NYJ defensive back Michael Carter II.
Fellow core special teamer Ashtyn Davis just posted a “🖤” emoji.
“Keep going bro🏾🏽,” pass rusher Bryce Huff said in encouragement.
And finally, former Jets teammate Kai Nacua replied with a “🫀” emoji, which represents the heart organ and some pretty clear symbolism.