In his first meeting with reporters since taking over CEO and Chairman duties for the New York Jets, Christopher Johnson made it clear that he is the man in charge while setting expectations for short-term success as the organization builds a foundation for the future.
"I want to win every game. Every player in that locker room wants to win," he said, speaking publicly for the first time after his older brother, Woody Johnson, was named the United States Ambassador to the United Kingdom and Northern Ireland. "What we're seeing I think are growing pains. These are young guys, there are some older guys on the team and some of them are doing an extraordinary job. But I think you're going to see this team get better and better and better. That's what I'm looking for and we are definitely not tanking."
Even though Johnson has been in constant communication with his older brother, he said those conversations do not cover football.
"Over the years, he always bounced things off of me and it would be great if I could do that with him," he said. "But he really has a full-time job over there. We are not discussing football. He's out of it."
Echoing Woody's earlier sentiments, Christopher said the football staff would be evaluated based on improvement rather than wins and losses.
"I'm not a patient man. I'm like any fan. I've been a fan of this team all my life," he said. "Yeah, you can look long term, but I want to see this team progressing every game. I'm not happy with losses, I'm not happy with mistakes. But I'm excited about the progression."
The Jets new CEO and Chariman expressed his support of head coach Todd Bowles, praising his connection with the players. He also spoke favorably of GM Mike Maccagnan.
"I think he's proven over the years before he got here that he's an extraordinary talent evaluator and I've seen nothing to dissuade me from that here," he said. "I think he's very thoughtful, he's very methodical and I'm really impressed with his drafts and his outlook."
With the Jets home opener only a few days away, Johnson is excited to connect with the Green & White faithful.
"One of my roles here is to get into the fan base. That's definitely one of my priorities this year, starting now especially with this home game, this first home game," he said. "I can't say what that perception is exactly. What I hope it is that this is a team on the rise."
Johnson, who said he wanted to be a bachelor in grade school due to his fondness of legendary bachelor Joe Namath, yearns to get the Green & White back to a championship level.
"What I really want to see happen is for us to go to the Super Bowl where I've promised my brother I'll leave him two tickets at will call," he said with a smile. "Every little brother wants to show up his big brother. The biggest challenge is to earn the trust of the fans, to have them know I care about this deep deeply, that I'm going to do everything I can to make it a great team again."