WINNIPEG - Jovon Johnson won’t be playing out his option in 2012 after all.
Six days after taking to Twitter to show his frustration about the state of contract negotations (before quickly offering up an apology), the star defensive back — and reigning CFL defensive player of the year — has signed a one-year contract extension with the Winnipeg Blue Bombers, with an option year that takes him through the end of the 2013 season.
“To me, it wasn’t really a priority, I just wanted to know where I was going to play at and be sure and be confident that the team I was going to play for really wanted me,” Johnson said during a conference call on Thursday afternoon. “Winnipeg stressed that over and over again and that’s really where I ultimately wanted to be. I wanted to get the deal done and be over with.”
So what changed since last Friday?
“Nothing really changed,” said Johnson. “Everything that happened is between me and management. We came to a mutual agreement and everything worked out best for the both of us.”
Johnson had a league-leading eight interceptions in 2011, two of which he returned for touchdowns. He worked out for NFL teams this off-season but was unable to take advantage of his option-year window.
Johnson is entering his fifth season in Blue and Gold and will be a key cog as the Bombers attempt to make it back to the Grey Cup.
“Clearly, Jovon Johnson is one of the marquee players in this league and we are thrilled to lock him down for the foreseeable future,” GM Joe Mack said in a press release. “His versatility to play special teams in addition to his regular role on defence makes him an even greater asset for us. We are looking for him to take an larger leadership role this season and are confident he is in a position to do so.”