Chad Johnson said he learned his lesson after a brief jail stint and hopes to put the mistakes behind him and focus on a return to the NFL.
The 35-year-old former NFL player spent a few days in jail this weekend after he angered a judge overseeing his domestic violence case. Johnson, who was working out a plea bargain for an incident in which he head-butted now ex-wife Evelyn Lozada, slapped his attorney on the backside during court proceedings. People in the courtroom laughed, but Broward County Judge Kathleen
McHugh chided Chad Johnson for making light of the allegations against him and ordered him to jail.
Johnson apologized to McHugh and was released on Monday, though he’s still required to serve 25 hours of community service and take domestic violence counseling.
After he was released, Johnson said the incident sobered him to the reality of his situation.
“I’ve learned my lesson, especially over those past seven days,” he said. “I think everyone deserves a second chance. Many would say I might not deserve it. I would like to finish my career off the right way.”
Johnson said he realized that his actions caused him to lose to two things he loved most in life — his “beautiful ex-wife” and the game of football. Johnson was cut by the Miami Dolphins last year following the domestic violence charges.
Now Chad Johnson wants at least one of those things back.
“I don’t want the last thing to be remembered you know, well, Chad was cut from the Dolphins for an incident he had with his wife,” Johnson said. “I would love to grace the football field one more time and to help some team. I’m not injured. There’s nothing wrong with me.”
But for Chad Johnson, an NFL comeback would likely run into the same problems facing his friend and former teammate Terrell Owens. Too many burned bridges, combined with declining skills, will likely keep most teams away from both the former Pro Bowlers, NFL insiders say.