Opposing Views broke down several free gent defensive ends the Seattle Seahawks could target in free agency, and Johnson was one of the candidates listed, though they too believe MJ won’t be leaving Cincinnati this year:
"DE, Michael Johnson: Often overlooked due to sharing a defensive line with all pro defensive tackle Geno Atkins, the stats speak to his abilities as a pass rusher. This one is more or less a pipe dream, as all signs point to the Bengals tagging him if they don’t work out an extension. If Pete Carroll loves height, as much as indicated by everyone on the planet (self included) they should be selling the farm to somehow land this kid. He’s only 25 years old and 6’7, but at the end of the day extremely unlikely to go anywhere this off season. Tis a crying shame."
The Bengals simply can’t afford to let Johnson go out and test the free agent market, as double-digit sack producers are sought-after by every NFL team hoping to make a deep playoff run, and if they allow him to test free agency, they may not see him back in Bengals stripes.