Andre Johnson has been the face of the Houston Texans for nearly all of the franchise's existence.
But now, after 12 seasons with the team, Johnson wants out. And the Texans are reportedly willing to grant the wish of their all-time leading receiver.
Johnson told the Houston Chronicle on Monday that he asked to be traded or released by the team after being informed that he would be asked to play a reduced role in 2015.
“I think if anybody else was in my situation they would have done the same thing I did," said Johnson, who was due to make more than $21 million over the remaining two years of his contract.
After being drafted third overall by Houston in 2003, a year after the team's inaugural season, Johnson has been the Texans' leading receiver in all but two seasons. One of those years was 2014, although Johnson still had 85 catches for 936 yards and three touchdowns.
“I don’t know how you tell a guy who catches 85 balls that he’ll only probably catch 40," Johnson said. "I feel like the role they were trying to put me in I’d be held back from maximizing my talents. I feel like [asking for a trade] was the best thing for both sides."
He added: “If we were living in a perfect world, you know I’d want to finish my career here, but, unfortunately, that’s not what’s going to happen. You just have to move forward.”
According to the Chronicle, the Texans gave Johnson's agent permission to seek a trade. And if that doesn't work out, the Chronicle said, Johnson would be placed on waivers and become an unrestricted free agent.
Johnson is apparently taking them at their word, posting what appears to be a farewell to the city Monday night on Instagram: "Thank you Houston for a wonderful 12 years. And a special thanks to all the fans who have supported me throughout my career. #TeamEighty"