6’1” 205lb Senior from Minnesota who was originally recruited as an Athlete. Played in 43 career games at Minnesota and owns the school record for receiving yards, touchdowns and 2nd in catches.
Good footwork in his release, concise choppy steps when lined up in the slot and/or off the LOS to create separation. Good, savvy route runner; makes up for his lack of top-end speed with savvy footwork and persuasive body and head fakes. Good strength in his legs to break off routes and not lose speed, and on sharp in/out routes, does a good job working back towards QB to stay friendly and not allow DB’s the step to get the PBU. Hands on the smaller side but is a good hands catcher to snatch the ball away from his body. Precise route runner offers good Redzone versatility and makes tons of contested grabs.
Adequate UOH and physicality at the LOS; was not put in position with regularity in college to beat press coverage. Short arms (30 7/8″), smaller hands (9″) and lack of top-end speed may make it a challenge at the next level to consistently get separation on the outside. May have locked himself in as a slot WR with the lack of skills teams covet.
Overall, Johnson sat out the NFL Combine said he wasn’t where he needed to be. To me, completely unacceptable, especially after what he left us with after tormenting Auburn in the Outback Bowl when he went for 12/204 and 2 TD’s. Also, with the limitations, teams have with this virus, Johnson is a guy teams need to interview to get a solid grasp of his mental processing and football I.Q. For instance, Keenan Allen ran a 4.75 during his pro-day, and given his production throughout his career, nobody would know that. But he and Johnson share similar skillsets, but we don’t know his ability to mentally process things to see if it pairs well with his savvy route running and ability to manipulate DB’s. I only had 3 games of tape in the All-22 to evaluate, and it’s not nearly enough, but based on what I’ve seen, and having watched their bowl game vs Auburn, he possesses a lot of Eric Decker with the ability to work out of the slot, work outside off the LOS, and even the measurables are almost an exact match. With that, Decker needed Peyton Manning for his career to take off, and I believe Johnson is the same type of player who will thrive in a system and a QB that prefers his type of abilities working out of the slot.